OpenFOAM batch compute on AWS

James Shaw, Reading University

Our research group writes atmospheric model code using OpenFOAM, an open source computational fluid dynamics C++ library. Amazon web services form a key part of our computational workflow: atmospheric simulations run on EC2 virtual machines inside Singularity containers, and results are uploaded automatically to S3 storage.

A code commit to GitHub triggers a build that compiles, tests, and deploys Debian packages to a web repository backed by S3 storage. This way, code updates are distributed to atmospheric modellers by the standard system update process.We’re interested to learn from other groups about their computational workflows.

How can work be scheduled across a cluster of cloud compute nodes? Can compute nodes be started and stopped dynamically? And how do we grow interest and support amongst researchers to create better, automated computational workflows?