The NVIDIA Hardware Grant Program is aimed at inspiring cutting-edge technological innovation, and finding new ways of enhancing research and learning.

This year, an application spearheaded by SMART’s Associate Research Fellow (Agent Based Modelling), Dr Johan Barthelemy saw the SMART Research Team selected as one of the research institutions to be awarded a hardware grant from NVIDIA.

This will see a high-end GTX980 graphic card awarded to the Facility.

“[This card] will allow us to investigate the benefit of GPU computing for our next generation traffic microsimulator,” explained Dr Barthelemy.

SMART’s new traffic microsimulator simulates the movement of people (represented by software agents) across a traffic network. Traditional traffic networks have assigned fixed paths to travellers based on their needs. In our model, travellers are assigned routing policies rather than paths, allowing the agent to re-route its path in real time depending on the perceived local traffic conditions and/or time spent.

The next generation agent-based microsimulator currently developed at SMART aims to be highly scalable in order to cope with large scenario involving millions of agents such as simulating the daily traffic of Sydney. Consequently, the sheer size of the problem requires a tremendous amount of parallel computational resources, which are available on modern graphical processing units such as the NVIDIA’s GTX 980.

This work is building on the capabilities used in the Shaping the Sydney of Tomorrow project, currently being undertaken at SMART Infrastructure Facility.