Scientific Development and Visualization Laboratory (SDVL)

The primary mission of the Scientific Development and Visualization Laboratory (SDVL) is to serve the high-end research needs of the entire MSI community in basic computational research and visualization. It also provides an entry point for MSI users to become familiar with MSI staff and resources. The lab provides Institute researchers with access to Linux workstations and associated software and technical support. MSI's tutorials also take place in the SDVL.



The Scientific Development and Visualization Laboratory is in ​575 Walter Library.


Researchers with SDVL accounts can have 24-hour access to the SDVL, seven days a week. Access is controlled through your U Card.

Getting U Card Access

Note: Due to ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, access to the SDVL is currently only available to those who are directly consulting with MSI staff on a project, requested by the MSI staff member. It will also be used for in-person tutorials when they re-start. Please refer to MSI communications and the most recent MSI Operations During COVID-19 statement for updates. We thank you for your understanding.

To get physical access to the SDVL, you need to have an active MSI account and an active U Card. Send the following information to with the subject heading "U-Card Access to the SDVL."  In the email  provide:

  • your full legal name
  • your MSI user name
  • your student/staff ID number
  • your U Card number
  • your primary PI
  • the email you would like associated
  • and your phone number.

It may take until the next business day for your U Card to be programmed.

Getting Help

For all technical support questions, email, call 612-626-0802, or visit room 587 Walter Library, near the SDVL.


The lab has 16 Linux workstations running CentOS7. Eight of the workstations were installed in Spring 2020; these include six small form factor machines (designated "rainer") and two large form factor machines (designated "everest").