Axiom is proud to be supporting NETWARCOM DODIN-N warfighting capabilities by providing critical technical skills, innovation, and creativity that are critical to the defense of Navy networks. We will perform cooperative vulnerability assessments, analyzes system vulnerabilities, and recommends solutions to actively defeat threats to Navy networks. #axiomproud


José Gálvez – NOAA Team Member of the Month, January ‘23

José Gálvez serves as an International Desk Coordinator for the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) in College Park, MD. José has demonstrated exceptional dedication and innovation in meeting his international tropical cyclone forecasting and training responsibilities. The NCEP International Desk provides essential decision support services to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the National Hurricane Center, the Weather Prediction Center, and various other partners. Although the International Desk is normally a 3-person team, due to unusual circumstances José worked alone during the 2022 Hurricane Season. José rose to the challenge — in the 30-day period ending October 14, he authored over 50 daily rainfall forecasts for threatening systems, including for devastating hurricanes Fiona and Ian. In fact, the San Juan Weather Forecast Office specifically noted the positive impact José had on “understanding the severity of the rainfall forecast associated with Hurricane Fiona.” Despite staffing challenges, during this difficult period José also developed a series of training modules under tight deadlines. In sum, José overcame significant challenges to provide essential information to partners internal and external to NOAA.

Axiom Demonstrates HAFS Cloud Performance on AWS platform

Axiom Demonstrates HAFS Cloud Performance on AWS Platform

Axiom Consultants, Inc., through the AWS Partnership Program, has successfully ported the Unified Forecast System (UFS) Hurricane Analysis and Forecast System (HAFS) to the cloud. This work was undertaken as a proof of concept to understand the cost and effort required to move the UFS Application from its traditional high performance computing environments like NOAA’s on-premises, bare-metal Research and Development High Performance Computing Systems (RDHPCS) to a cloud environment – a transition that potentially breaks down barriers to research and development for many UFS Community contributors outside NOAA. 

We began with a cost assessment for using AWS to run HAFS. We ran a basic HAFS forecast test case to test AWS Parallel Cluster, choosing instance types that fit the needs of the components of the HAFS system (preprocessing, atmospheric forecast, and postprocessing). 

We compared:

  • Intel-based Parallel Cluster configuration to an alternative AMD-based configuration.
  • Used instance types leveraging Intel Skylake-SP processors that had been memory optimized (r5.24xlarge) for memory intensive pre- and post-processing components.
  • We chose compute optimized versions (c5n.18xlarge) with Elastic Fabric Adaptor (EFA) enabled for the forecast component. When running the same experiments with AMD processors, we used Hpc6a.48xlarge instances featuring EFA-enabled 3rd generation AMD EPYC 7003 series processors for all HAFS components. We followed up with a preliminary assessment of containerizing HAFS with Singularity and running the workflow on the Intel- and AMD-configured Parallel Clusters.

Preliminary results:

  • AMD processors speed up pre-processing steps by a factor of 2.6 – 3, with a cost savings factor of 5.5-6.3 over the r5, memory optimized Intel Skylake-SP instances.
  • Comparing the forecasts over 10 instances on HPC6a and c5n.18xlarges clusters, the AMD platform performed 3x faster, for a computational cost savings of 5x that of c5n instances.

Future work:

  • Extend the work to assess cost associated with more complicated HAFS configurations.
  • Port to additional cloud platforms
  • Perform scaling studies for HAFS components
  • Contribute portability changes and container recipes to the UFS Community

We recognized a challenge at NOAA, so we prototyped an innovative solution by partnering with AWS. Now we’ve positioned ourselves to contribute portability changes and container recipes back to the UFS Community and the NWS repository. — “We care about the mission…”