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EECS Facilities Statement

The Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) moved to the newly-built Min H. Kao Electrical Engineering and Computer Science building in December 2011. The $37.5M facility houses 165,000 square feet of faculty, staff, and student offices, conference rooms, academic and research laboratories, and classrooms. Eleven laboratories are dedicated to engineering courses such as Signals and Systems, Networking, Circuits, Electronics, and Embedded Systems. Three laboratories are used for Senior Design projects. Two computer laboratories are available for instructional purposes:

  • Hydra – 31 Dell OptiPlex 7040 computers with 3.4 GHz Intel Core i7-6700 processors, 16GB SDRAM and nVidia GeForce GT 745 GPUs. The computers run the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7. Installed applications include CodeLite, CUDA, Eclipse, GIMP, NetBeans, MATLAB, Synopsys Saber and a variety of open-source software applications and development environments.
  • Tesla – 31 Dell Optiplex 9020 computers with 3.4 GHz Intel Core i5-4670 Processors, 8GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM and nVidia GeForce GTX 645 GPUs. The computers run the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7. Installed applications include CodeLite, CUDA, Eclipse, GIMP, NetBeans, MATLAB, Synopsys Saber and a variety of open-source software applications and development environments.

Various Windows laboratories run the Microsoft Windows 10 operating system. Installed applications include Microsoft Office, Visual Studio, Agilent, Ansoft, AutoCAD, Cadence, CodeLite, Comsol, CST Studio, Digilent, LabVIEW, LTSpice, Maple, MATLAB and Xilinx ISE. Instructional laboratories and conference rooms have video projection capabilities and/or LED displays. Min H. Kao network technologies include 1 Gbps Ethernet and two wireless networks:

  • eduroam – a secure network available to faculty, staff, and students. In addition to wireless access at UT, faculty, staff, and students are able to obtain Internet connectivity when visiting other participating eduroam institutions.
  • ut-open – an unsecured network available to faculty, staff, students, and visitors. A new portal will be put in place to manage network registration and visitor access.

The EECS departmental infrastructure provides LDAP authentication, web, file/print, and database services. Local research facilities include ADA – multiple Dell PowerEdge servers running a broad selection of licensed engineering applications including products from Agilent, Altium, Ansys, Cadence, Comsol, EMA, GE, Mentor Graphics, Manitoba, Plexim, Siemens, Sonnet, and Synopsys.

EECS members also have access to the The Advanced Computing Facility (ACF). ACF is made possible through a partnership between the Joint Institute for Computational Sciences (JICS), the University of Tennessee Knoxville (UTK), and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, faculty investment from both campuses, and other partners, with the goal of consolidating computational resources, user support, and investments across the State to provide researchers with a significant, regional-class computing resource managed by a national-class staff.

The ACF comprises ACF-Newton and ACF-SIP (Secure Information Processing) to provide environments necessary to meet the computing needs of faculty working on either open or sensitive applications, or both. ACF-Newton combines the Beacon and Newton clusters, which offers a computing resource that supports serial and parallel computing, in the latter case with and without coprocessors, and most memory needs, including the need for terascale memory per node. ACF-Newton is coupled to a petascale, high-speed parallel file system to provide a balanced system offering high-performance computing along with fast data access and ample storage. ACF-SIP is a rapidly growing environment providing both computing and storage resources to process sensitive data. JICS staff support users across the critical spectrum of user assistance, operations, scientific computing, and education, outreach, and training.

The below table describes the initial resources available to users of the ACF.

Node Set CPU Nodes Cores/node GB Mem/Node Total Cores Interconnect
Beacon Intel® Xeon® E5-2670 44 16 256 704 FDR
Rho Intel® Xeon® E5-2670 48 16 32 768 QDR
Sigma Intel® Xeon® E5-2680 118 24 128 2832 FDR
Monster Intel® Xeon® E5-2687W 1 24 1024 24 Ethernet
KNL Intel® Xeon® Phi® 7210 4 64 256 256 EDR

The University of Tennessee-Knoxville’s Office of Information Technology (OIT) is responsible for managing a complex network that spans the campus and remote sites throughout the state. OIT Network Services’ responsibilities include the management of the local UTK network (both wired and wireless), a range of wide area connections, and Internet/Internet2 connectivity. In addition, the group manages various security devices such as firewalls, VPN (Virtual Private Network) access devices, IPS and IDS devices (Intrusion Prevention/Detection Systems). At its core, the UTK network supports speeds of 10 gigabits per second (Gbps) and greater. Buildings are dual-connected with at least 1 Gbps, with many featuring 10 Gbps connections to the core in order to accommodate applications that require very high bandwidth. Overall, the campus network can support approximately 36,000 100 Mbps connections, 28,000 Gigabit Ethernet connections and 8,600 Ten Gigabit Ethernet connections. A state of the art wireless network consisting of more than 4,500 wireless access points spans the entire campus. A major upgrade to the wireless infrastructure was completed in the summer of 2015 supporting 802.11a/g (54 Mbps), 802.11n (450 Mbps) and 802.11ac (1.3 Gbps).

Remote offices are linked to the main campus network using connections ranging from 1.5 to 100 Mbps. Such locations include offices in Knoxville, Oak Ridge, Nashville, and Agriculture Extension facilities at various locations in Tennessee. Multiple, redundant connections provide the UTK community with access to the Internet at an aggregate speed of more than 10 Gbps. Multi-Gbps networks connect UTK to research facilities at ORNL (Titan supercomputer) and Internet 2 sites via Southern Crossroads ( UTK is a Sponsored Education Group Participant (SEGP), a program that allows us to sponsor other educational institutions’ access to Internet2 resources. Two core firewalls and a multitude of smaller, department-size firewalls, are deployed and managed by Network Services. Secure remote access is facilitated through VPN access devices (appliances) that support both IPSec and SSL/VPN access.

Updated November 2017.

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