Petrochemical giant BP has purchased a large cluster of Hewlett-Packard Linux servers using Intel's Itanium 2 processors to help search for oil and gas deposits.
BP bought 259 HP rx5670 systems, each with four Itanium 2 processors. The systems collectively have more than 8,000GB of memory and can perform 4 trillion calculations per second, according to HP and Intel. The purchase price was not disclosed.
The computing cluster will be used for the computationally difficult task of seismic processing, in which computers deduce 3D models of what lies beneath the Earth's surface--petrochemicals, for example. They reconstruct these interior features by analyzing how fast sound waves from a man-made explosion travel through different materials before reaching an array of sensitive detectors.
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