About the GPU COE at the University of Maryland, College Park (UMD)
The University of Maryland, College Park (UMD) was awarded an NVIDIA GPU Center of Excellence in 2009.  UMD was selected for its pioneering use of GPU computing and the CUDA programming model across research and teaching efforts within multiple science and engineering departments.

The GPU COE at UMD is supporting several projects that make extensive use of GPUs such as DNA sequencing. There has been a dramatic increase in the volume of sequence data that can be analyzed, thanks to GPUs, and sequence alignment programs such as MUMmerGPU, a system developed by University of Maryland with the support of the National Institute of Health, have proven essential to this process. By structuring the required processing in parallel on a GPU, MUMmerGPU achieves more than a 10-fold speedup over a serial CPU version of the sequence alignment kernel.

Some of the other projects at the UMD GPU COE include phylogenetics (assembling the tree of life), computational proteomics, scientific computing, fast multipole methods, audio-video processing, automated nano-assembly, GIS applications, high-energy physics, computer-aided manufacturing, and high-performance scientific visualization.

About the PI
Amitabh Varshney is a Professor of Computer Science and Director of the Institute for Advanced Computer Studies (UMIACS) at the University of Maryland at College Park. He received a B. Tech. in Computer Science from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi in 1989 and a M.S. and Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1991 and 1994. During 1994 - 2000, he was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Varshney's research focus is on exploring the applications of graphics and visualization in engineering, science, and medicine. He has worked on the design and implementation of virtual walkthroughs of proposed structures, such as buildings, automobiles, and submarines. In the process he has developed new algorithms for automatically generating multi-resolution object hierarchies, image-based rendering, parallel computation and simplification of radiosity meshes, and fine gesture recognition for virtual environments. His work on efficient and robust computation of smooth molecular surfaces is useful in the rational drug design process through the protein folding and docking problems. He is currently exploring applications in general-purpose high-performance parallel computing using clusters of CPUs and Graphics Processing Units (GPUs). He has also consulted and collaborated with the industry including NVIDIA, Honda, IBM, Daimler Chrysler, General Dynamics, and Reuters. Varshney received a NSF CAREER Award in 1995 and a Honda Research Initiation Award in 1997. He received the IEEE Visualization Technical Achievement Award in 2004. He is currently serving as the Chair of the IEEE Visualization and Graphics Technical Committee. Varshney is a Fellow of IEEE.