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Dallas, Texas –SGI announced that Raytheon Company has selected the SGI Origin 3000 series and its breakthrough SGI NUMAflex modular technology to upgrade the supercomputing capabilities of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) in Princeton, N. J. The upgrade is expected to improve the nation’s climate prediction and weather forecasting capabilities.
Eight 128-processor SGI Origin 3800 systems will form a large-scale cluster and two 64-processor SGI Origin 3800 systems will serve as an analysis cluster. The smaller analysis cluster will also serve GFDL’s data archive that is stored in three robotic tape libraries and is expected to reach 2PB in size by September 2003.
The SGI Origin 3800 systems will have the ability to perform more than 900 billion floating-point arithmetic operations per second (900 GFLOP) and will have more than four times the performance of the three CrayÆ computers that they replace.
“The SGI Origin 3000 series technology will greatly improve GFDL’s ability to meet the demands of its scientific research,” said Ellis Bailey, Raytheon’s GFDL program manager.
“This system addresses GFDL’s need for high-performance computing and its need for high reliability,” said James Ballew, Raytheon’s chief architect for the system.
GFDL is a federal research laboratory in the Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, part of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The laboratory performs comprehensive, long-lead-time research that is fundamental to the mission of NOAA.
One of the goals of this research is to expand the scientific understanding of the physical processes governing the behavior of the atmosphere and the oceans as complex fluid systems. These systems can be modeled mathematically, and their phenomenology can be studied by complex computer simulations. Using this information can improve climate prediction and weather forecasting. GFDL is one of the nation’s foremost computer laboratories concentrating primarily on the modeling of hurricanes and other large-scale weather phenomena.
The SGI Origin 3000 series offers unparalleled flexibility, resiliency, overall investment protection and superior performance. The SGI NUMAflex modular technology is a brick-style system for constructing small to very large computer systems from a common set of building blocks.
In late September, NOAA awarded the Raytheon Company, of Garland, Texas, a four-year, $34 million base contract to build the high-performance computing system. The total value of the contract, inclusive of all options, is approximately $67 million.
Financing for the project is being provided by SGI Solutions Finance, a division of SGI. A key component in the winning strategy proposed by Raytheon and SGI was a creative financial solution structured through SGI Solutions Finance.
“We are excited about our participation in this project and look forward to many more opportunities to partner with Raytheon and its customers,” said Lisa Paquette-Nelson, Americas manager for SGI Solutions Finance.
Raytheon Company is a global technology leader that provides products and services in the areas of commercial and defense electronics and business and special-mission aircraft. Raytheon has operations throughout the United States and serves customers in 70 countries.
SGI provides a broad range of high-performance computing and advanced graphics solutions that enable customers to understand and conquer their toughest computing problems. Headquartered in Mountain View, Calif., with offices worldwide, the company is located on the Web at http://www.sgi.com .