posted on June 9, 2014

Ecologists and biologists are concerned about recent data that shows that Minnesota's iconic moose seem to be vanishing. The decline in the moose population is being studied by MSI PI Assistant Professor James Forester (Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology). The College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences highlighted this research in the Spring 2014 issue of their journal Solutions (Sara Specht, "Now You See Them," Solutions, Spring 2014, online edition, downloaded June 2, 2014).

Professor Forester and his research group at MSI are developing a Decision Support Tool that will allow biologists and resource managers to make predictions about populations based on multiple sets of assumptions, evaluate the outcomes, and then make informed management decisions. They are especially interested in large ungulates, such as moose, and invasive biofuel crops. The work is computationally intensive, requiring the use of MSI.

posted on June 5, 2014

MSI Principal Investigator Martin Saar, an associate professor in the Department of Earth Sciences, spoke at Northwestern University's 4th Climate Change Symposium in May. The conference included experts from the U.S. and Canada, who discussed "The Future of Carbon." Professor Saar spoke about his research, which includes geologic CO2 sequestration and CO2-based geothermal energy extraction reservoirs. He uses MSI resources to study fluid flow, chemical reactions, and the coupling between the two in geologic porous media. The conference was written up in Medill Reports, a journal of Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.

posted on June 4, 2014

A study headed by MSI PI Professor Julian Marshall (Civil Engineering; Institute on the Environment) has been receiving a great deal of recent media attention. The study analyzes pollution distribution across the U.S. and shows that people of color are exposed to higher levels of atmospheric pollution than whites. The study includes other factors, such as income level. MSI PI Associate Professor Dylan Millet (Soil, Water, and Climate) is also part of this research study. Both Professor Marshall and Professor Millet use MSI resources to model atmospheric pollution.

An article about this study appeared in the prestigious journal The Economist in May ("The colour of pollution," The Economist, online edition, May 24, 2014,, downloaded May 28, 2014). The study and an interview with Professor Marshall also appeared in April on the Minnesota news site (Ibrahim Hirsi, "Huge gap in pollution exposure by race surprises U of M researchers," MinnPost,, downloaded June 3, 2014).  The data from this research project appears on Professor Marshall's website.


posted on June 2, 2014

On Wednesday, June 4, from 04:00 - 15:00, MSI staff will perform scheduled maintenance and upgrades to the network and various systems.

During this maintenance period, we will be performing the following updates:

•  The MSI central filesystem, Panasas, will be upgraded to the latest server version. We expect clients to enter an IO wait period during this update, meaning that any running jobs should enter the wait state and resume once the upgrade is finished. Login resources will be unavailable during the upgrade period of 1 - 2 hours.
•  Citrix systems will be updated.

Systems status is always available on our Status page.

If you have any questions, please email


posted on May 16, 2014

Assistant Professor Rafael Fernandes (Physics and Astronomy) has been selected by the Department of Energy (DOE) to receive an award from the Early Career Research Program. This program is intended to provide support to outstanding researchers in the early years of their careers. It is being given to only 35 scientists in the U.S. this year.

Professor Fernandes specializes in theoretical condensed matter physics. He uses MSI for research into superconductivity in iron-based compounds.

An article about Professor Fernandes and this award appears on the College of Science and Engineering website.