People - Written by on April 11, 2013

ORNL High-Performance Computing Team Leader Honored for Career Achievements

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The National Center for Computational Science's Don Maxwell

The National Center for Computational Science’s Don Maxwell

The Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility’s (OLCF’s) High-Performance Computing Operations team leader, Don Maxwell, received a lifetime achievement award from Adaptive Computing as part of their first annual Adaptie Awards.

The provider of HPC workload management software acknowledged Maxwell’s contributions to the greater HPC industry and to the advancement of their management software Moab, which is now widely used on Cray supercomputing platforms.

Maxwell began his career with the Department of Energy more than 25 years ago at the Y-12 Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee before joining Oak Ridge National Laboratory in 2000. He was integral to the transition from IBM systems to the Cray XT series, including Jaguar, which ranked as the world’s most powerful supercomputer in November 2009 on the Top500 list, and Jaguar’s successor Titan, which currently holds the number one spot.

To assist users competing for coveted time on Jaguar, Maxwell and the OLCF Operations team worked with Cray and Adaptive Computing in 2006 to port the Moab management system to Jaguar’s Cray platform. As Jaguar evolved over the years, so did Maxwell’s work with Moab.

“Life without Moab would be very difficult,” Maxwell said. “Moab provides the ‘job scheduling’ function for the supercomputer. It allows users to submit jobs to run on the machine at some point in the future without further intervention, and it allows the OLCF to prioritize larger jobs that are crucial to our mission for the Department of Energy.”

Despite his high honors from Adaptive Computing, Maxwell said their relationship is not over, and they will stay in close collaboration as Moab is repurposed for Titan.

“We have some things to work on going forward that I think are exciting for the product,” Maxwell said in his acceptance speech.

His speech was delivered via video during MoabCon 2013, Adaptive Computing’s annual user conference in Park City, Utah. Maxwell stayed behind at ORNL, committed to work on Titan that will define the next chapter in his celebrated career. —Katie Elyce Freeman