The OVPR’s Research blog has highlighted some new developments at MSI. These include the new Panasas storage system, upgrades to Cascade (the Institute’s GPU cluster), and expanded consulting services.


You can read the article on the Research blog. The blog post includes a link to a short video about MSI.



MSI recently purchased a new storage system and changed the way that storage at MSI is allocated and accounted for. MSI is now preparing to move the Galaxy storage to the new system and account for Galaxy files in the overall quota for groups. Just as each individual's Unix home directory is attributed to the total group quota usage, each user's Galaxy usage will count towards the group quota. Please refer to the Panasas Migration Guide for information about these changes.


MSI will begin data migration during the week of April 1, 2013. Once the initial migration is completed MSI will announce a planned downtime for Galaxy to do a final migration and make the necessary configuration changes to begin using the Panasas storage system. MSI will notify users once the final date for using the updated quota system has been announced.


In anticipation of these changes, MSI asks all Galaxy users to review their data in Galaxy and delete any data that is no longer required. A guide for archiving and cleansing data from Galaxy can be found at the link below.  Any data removed before migration begins reduces the amount of data that needs to be moved to the new system. 


Guide for archiving and cleansing Galaxy data:


Both the OVPR’s Business and Research blogs recently published articles discussing the research of MSI PI Jian-Ping Wang, a Distinguished McKnight professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He is studying new types of magnetic materials with possible applications ranging from more-efficient recording media to cancer detection.

Professor Wang uses MSI resources to support his group’s studies of the magnetic properties of Fe16N2. This research supports efforts to find a next-generation, environmentally friendly magnet that would be technologically superior to currently used magnets. Applications could include replacing the rare-earth magnets now used in electric vehicles and wind turbines, and as a replacement for the semiconductor/transistor combination that powers personal computers. Professor Wang is also studying the possibilities of heat-assisted magnetic recording, which could provide the capability for considerably higher recording densities than is possible now.



The OVPR’s Research and Business blogs periodically publish lists of University researchers who have been awarded patents. The most recent list includes a patent that relates to work that the faculty members are doing using MSI resources.


Professor Perry Li and Professor Thomas Chase, both in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, were awarded a patent for a “Pulse Width Modulated Fluidic Valve.” Professor Li’s MSI research involves computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analyses of hydraulic components, which includes the development of innovative fluid power components, such as digital hydraulic valves, that are compact and efficient. MSI resources are used to perform CFD and heat transfer studies to gain understanding of the physics and to enable improved design. Professor Chase wishes to create extremely efficient proportional valves for pneumatic systems by exploiting Micro-Electrical Mechanical Systems technology. This project uses MSI resources to simulate the performance of the valve and for optimization of the design.





Three MSI PIs have received the Award for Outstanding Contributions to Postbaccalaureate, Graduate, and Professional Education, which recognizes excellence in teaching.


Professor Jerry Cohen (Horticultural Science) uses MSI as part of a project to develop robust methods for stable isotope labeling of plant proteins.


Professor Keshab Parhi (Electrical and Computer Engineering) is working on two projects that use MSI resources. The first deals with feature computation and classification of biomedical signal processing systems and the second concerns communications systems. 


Associate Professor Lisa Schimmenti (Pediatrics) uses Galaxy and other software packages to store and analyze data output from the Biomedical Genomics Center as part of her studies of renal coloboma syndrome, a disorder causing severe disabling eye abnormalities and kidney failure.


The awards were announced in the March 13 People section of the University News site.