NCSA to Expand its High-Performance Computing Environment: Center Purchases 1,024 SGI Altix System
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., (July 14, 2004)—Silicon Graphics (NYSE: SGI) today announced that the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) today has purchased through James River Technical, an SGI channel partner, a Silicon Graphics shared-memory, Symmetric Multi-Processor (SMP) computing system, and storage technology. The SGI® Altix® system, to be named Cobalt, will consist of 1,024 Intel® Itanium® 2 processors running the Linux® operating system, 3 terabytes of globally accessible memory, and 370 terabytes of SGI® InfiniteStorage that will serve as the Center's shared file system, accessible by other high-performance computing resources within NCSA.
With a peak performance of more than 6 teraflops, Cobalt will bring the total computing power at NCSA to over 35 teraflops and the disk storage to three-quarters of a petabyte.
The SGI system will open new research frontiers for scientists in a wide range of disciplines. Cosmologists will be able to undertake large-scale simulations of the evolution of the universe, while atmospheric scientists access the system for on-demand data analysis in response to severe weather.
"The SGI Altix system will offer researchers a unique configuration that is not currently part of the cyberinfrastructure available to academic researchers," says NCSA interim director Rob Pennington. "This system will make it possible to handle very large computational applications, create and retain large datasets and databases in memory, and enable real-time, interactive data analysis."
NCSA also plans to integrate the SGI SMP system with other national distributed resources through the TeraGrid/Extensible Terascale Facility cyberinfrastructure.
The SGI Altix system will diversify NCSA's current high-performance computing environment (Tungsten, Mercury, Copper, Titan, and Platinum) by providing an SMP environment with large shared memory pool and advanced I/O capabilities. The system will also be equipped with Altair PBS Pro job-management and queuing software and the SGI® InfiniteStorage Shared Filesystem CXFS™ and with a 370 terabyte SGI® InfiniteStorage TP9500 disk array. SGI will provide a common scheduling and storage environment between disparate system resources within NCSA's computing environment.
"Researchers will no longer need to spend time ensuring that their challenges fit within the confines of a system's memory or capability," says Dave Parry, SGI senior vice president of the Servers and Platform Group. "Instead they will be challenged only by their efforts in creating new approaches to solving bigger problems."
"The Itanium 2-based Altix supercomputer is a powerful addition to NCSA's high performance computing center," said Jason Waxman, Intel director of marketing for the Enterprise Product Group. "The processing power of the Itanium 2-based system will give researchers the ability to see and analyze the universe in ways that were not even possible a few years ago."
This purchase reflects one of the two orders noted in SGI's June 23rd announcement of two U.S supercomputing orders for SGI Altix servers and related SGI InfiniteStorage systems and services. These orders are expected to be delivered in the first two quarters of SGI's next fiscal year, which ends in June 2005. The storage component of Cobalt was installed at NCSA in June 2004, and the servers are scheduled to be fully installed by the end of calendar 2004. The target date for the system to be fully available to scientific users is March 1, 2005.
This news release contains forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. Such risks and uncertainties include the possibility that the order described in this release will not be finalized or will be modified or cancelled by the customer, the possibility that the timing of deliveries may be affected by component availability or other factors, and the other risks detailed from time to time in the company's most recent SEC reports, including its reports on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q. Silicon Graphics undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether changes occur as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
NCSA (National Center for Supercomputing Applications) is a national high-performance computing center that develops and deploys cutting-edge computing, networking and information technologies. Located at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, NCSA is funded by the National Science Foundation. Additional support comes from the state of Illinois, the University of Illinois, private sector partners and other federal agencies. For more information, see http://www.ncsa.uiuc.edu/.
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