[Beowulf] IBM gets nod to build supercomputer

Doug Shubert doug at accessgate.net
Tue Jul 27 06:04:08 PDT 2004

IBM to Build Supercomputer for U.S. Military
Tue Jul 27, 2004 12:05 AM ET

NEW YORK (Reuters) - IBM Corp. said it had been selected to build a 
supercomputer for the U.S. Department of Defense that would be used by 
the military for war simulation, weather forecasting and other 

The computer will be deployed at the Naval Oceanographic Office Major 
Shared Resource Center in Mississippi, IBM said.

IBM did not disclose the exact financial terms of the deal but said it 
was valued in tens of millions of dollars.

The supercomputer consists of 368 powerful computers connected together 
with a total of about 3,000 64-bit microprocessors made by IBM. The 
supercomputer would run on IBM's Unix operating system -- the AIX.

"This is a race horse," said Debra Goldfarb, vice president of strategy 
and products for IBM's Deep Computing unit. She said the purchase shows 
IBM's commitment to building powerful and sophisticated computers for 
the Defense Department."

The system will perform at a peak speed of 20 teraflops, or 20 trillion 
mathematical operations per second. That means the supercomputer will be 
able to accomplish in just one second what it would take a person with a 
calculator 1.2 million years.

IBM expects the computer to be ranked among the world's 10 fastest 
computers when the next list of the top 500 computers is released.

The Top 500 list of fastest computers is compiled and published twice a 
year by Jack Dongarra from the University of Tennessee, Erich Strohmaier 
and Horst Simon of NERSC/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Hans 
Meuer of the University of Mannheim (Germany).

The fastest computer, according to the most recent list, was the Earth 
Simulator Center in Japan made by NEC Corp.

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