Yearbook 2012

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At fertilisation, we get one set of chromosomes from each parent and, in general, pass on either the paternal or the maternal allele of each gene with equal frequency to our children. This has been taught by Mendel. According to Richard Dawkins’ hypothesis, however, there are selfish genes which are not content with random selection and thus actively promote their increased transmission to the next generation. Evidence for this assumption comes from a mouse gene that is transmitted at a frequency of up to 99% from males to their offspring. more
The solution of many medically important aspects depends on the prediction of the behaviour of complex networks, e.g. biological networks active within a tumor but also in other tissues of a patient under complex conditions, for example a particular therapy. So far, it is not possible to predict the success of a specific therapy for a specific patient. We are sequencing the genome of individual cancer patients as well as the genome and transcriptome of their tumor as a basis of a virtual-patient-model, used to predict effect and side effects of specific therapies on the individual patient. more
The power consumption at DKRZ for the high performance computing system Blizzard, disk systems, other IT-infrastructure and the cooling systems adds up to 2 MW. In 2011 the power input reached 17 GWh causing energy costs of 1.85 million Euro. DKRZ works intensively on the optimization of its energy efficiency: cold aisle and hot aisle housings for Blizzard were built and the cooling water circuits as well as the refrigerating machines were optimized. According to the measures being taken 750 MWH respectively 425 tons CO2 and thus about 100.000 Euro of the running costs can be saved per year. more

CMIP5 - Climate simulations and data base for the next IPCC report

German Climate Computation Center Legutke, Stephanie; Kindermann, Stephan; Glushak, Ksenia; Böttinger, Michael; Lautenschlager, Michael
The German contribution to the CMIP5 project and to the climate model database for the 5th IPCC report has been generated at the DKRZ with the Earth system model of the MPI for Meteorologie. Three model configurations have been used in 482 simulations according to the CMIP5 data protocol. A total of 61 TB of data is available now. Some of the CMIP5 model results will be downscaled over Africa or Europe in the framework of the CORDEX project. The German activities are embedded in a worldwide collaborative project. All model results will be available in the Earth System Grid Federation (ESGF). more
Cloud-based services are increasingly used for scientific application scenarios as they offer benefits like elasticity, scalability and measured service usage. GWDG already offer a selection of cloud services to support the institutes of the Max Planck Society, among which are GWDG Cloud Share providing data sharing and synchronization, and GWDG Compute Cloud offering virtual server capabilities. In addition, GWDG participates in various research and development projects to advance and complement existing services. more

Fishing for gravitational waves

Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics Babak, Stanislav; Jasiulek, Michael; Schutz, Bernard F.
The ground-based gravitational wave observatories, eLISA and pulsar timing arrays span a huge frequency range and probe very different sources of gravitational waves. As instruments are improved and the data analysis techniques become even more robust and sophisticated, detections become more and more likely. Conservatively, we expect a first detection of gravitational waves within the next 10 years, and it seems likely to happen in half that time. more
Two decades ago the construction of kilometer-scale gravitational wave detectors had started and the sensitivity has continuously been improved. Now these instruments are being upgraded to the second generation, which in a few years’ time will allow the first direct detection of gravitational waves and analysis of some astrophysical processes with gravitational waves. Routine gravitational wave astronomy though, will require the supreme sensitivity of third generation instruments, like the Einstein Telescope, an underground gravitational wave observatory, designed in a pan-European effort. more
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