Maui News

$11.7M Earmarked for Maui Space Surveillance System

May 26, 2016, 1:55 PM HST
* Updated May 26, 2:00 PM
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Observatories atop Haleakalā file photo 2011 by Wendy Osher.

Observatories atop Haleakalā file photo 2011 by Wendy Osher.

US Senator Brian Schatz helped secure $222 million for the Army’s High Performance Computing Modernization Program, which supports the Department of Defense’s Regional Supercomputers, including the Maui High Performance Computing Center.

The funding was part of a bipartisan defense appropriations bill for fiscal year 2017 that was approved today by the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Schatz who is a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, worked to boost the funding by $45 million above the president’s fiscal year 2017 budget.

Computing Center officials say the computational capacity of Maui’s newest supercomputer will advance MHPCC to the forefront of High Performance Computing and re-establish it among the leaders in the Department of Defense research and development community. File photo by Wendy Osher.

Maui’s supercomputer facility. File photo by Wendy Osher.

“Modern threats require modern defenses, and these funds will help ensure that the Department of Defense is leveraging supercomputing technology to combat the challenges we face in the world,” said Senator Schatz. “I’m glad we were able to secure additional funding for this program, which will ensure that we continue to support critical supercomputing software and capability development here in Hawai‘i.”

In addition, the defense appropriations bill includes $11.7 million for the Maui Space Surveillance System, which is important to tracking, identifying, and characterizing space objects of interest.

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The funding supports completion of the operational Dynamic Optical Telescope System and associated simulation tool, TASMAN.

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It also supports studying and implementing refinements to the DOTS to transition to full operational capability, including optimally tasking the suite of MSSS telescopes to improve capability and efficiency utility of MSSS by supporting simultaneous mission objectives including catalog maintenance, threat indications and warnings, and special observations.

The spending bill now heads to the Senate floor for a final vote.

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