CHEYENNE - The first color renderings of the National Center for Atmospheric Research's Wyoming supercomputing center were released Tuesday.
The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and its managing organization, the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), jointly presented the unveiling at a ceremony in Cheyenne, according to a media release from the University of Wyoming.
The Cheyenne-based center, which is expected to be online in 2011, will be dedicated to advancing scientists' understanding of climate, weather and other Earth and atmospheric processes.
"We are pleased with both the design and what it signifies in terms of progress for this project," NCAR Director Eric Barron said in the release. "It gives us a real sense of what the facility will look like and substance for the review process."
Denver-based H+L Architecture led the design team, which included the California Data Center Design Group.
Officials said completion of the initial design phase represents an important milestone in the multistep process used by the National Science Foundation, NCAR's sponsor, to review the project. Construction of the facility will begin in spring 2010, pending the outcome of the reviews.
Tuesday's event highlighted construction documents that are 65 percent complete. One of the illustrations showed turbines from the Happy Jack Windpower project in the background and a group of four antelope in the foreground.
The facility is being developed in partnership with the University of Wyoming, the state of Wyoming, Cheyenne LEADS, the Wyoming Business Council and Cheyenne Light, Fuel and Power.
It will contain some of the world's most powerful supercomputers dedicated to improving scientific understanding of climate change, severe weather, air quality, and other vital atmospheric science and geoscience topics.
The center will also house a premier data storage and archival facility that holds historical climate records and other information.