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Posted: April 14, 2009

Large-scale simulations in nanotechnology benefit from supercomputer power

(Nanowerk News) Global supercomputer leader Cray Inc. today announced that the Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (JAIST) has put the country's first Cray XT5 supercomputer into production. The new system features Cray's ECOphlex(TM) liquid-cooling technology and is approximately 11 times faster than the Cray XT3(TM) supercomputer installed at JAIST in 2005.
JAIST, one of Japan's premier academic research centers, is using its new Cray XT5 supercomputer as the main system for its high-performance computing facility. With peak performance of 19.6 teraflops (trillions of calculations per second), the system is speeding advances in the development of new algorithms for highly parallel computers, large-scale simulations in nanotechnology, biomechanics and a wide range of other scientific disciplines.
"The most important reason for our introduction of the new Cray XT5 supercomputer was our need to improve operating efficiency -- not to mention our need to streamline the research environment," said Teruo Matsuzawa, Ph.D., director of the JAIST Center for Information Science. "Cray's liquid-cooling technology is the best match for these needs and sits well with our principle of willingly evaluating state-of-the-art technologies. We plan to leverage the XT5 to its fullest potential as the main system for our R&D in various disciplines."
The three-cabinet, Cray XT5 system at JAIST features a 2,048-core central processing unit (CPU), which is the first use of AMD's "Shanghai" quad-core processors in a Cray XT(TM) supercomputer. The new system also features 4 TBs of main memory and 96 TBs of storage.
"The Cray XT5 supercomputer now operating at JAIST is a leap forward in data center efficiency with its densely implemented CPUs and ECOphlex liquid-cooling system," said Mamoru Nakano, president of Cray Japan. "We are also delighted that this delivery is made even more memorable by the fact that it is the world's first use of AMD's latest processors in a Cray XT system. We have high expectations that in the near future such leading technologies produced by Cray will be widely used by many more companies and academic institutions."
About JAIST
Founded in 1990, Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (JAIST) was the first national institute in Japan to focus exclusively on graduate-level training and research. Organized into three graduate schools (information science, materials science and knowledge science), JAIST provides up-to-date graduate training for up to 850 students while maintaining competitive research programs through various dedicated centers, such as technical computing, nanotechnology and information security. For more information, go to www.jaist.ac.jp.
About the Cray XT5 Supercomputer
As the world's most scalable Linux supercomputer, the Cray XT5 system combines unprecedented sustained application performance with exceptional manageability and reliability, and lower cost of ownership for customers. Using powerful Quad-Core AMD Opteron processors, the Cray XT5 system supports both Cray XT4(TM) blades for optimized compute-to-communications balance and Cray XT5 blades optimized for memory-intensive and/or compute-biased workloads. Following the established success of the Cray XT product line, the Cray XT5 system introduces ECOphlex technology, packaging and design features that promote energy savings along two dimensions: by enabling greater system density and by reducing the need for expensive air cooling and air conditioners. The system's Cray Linux Environment(TM) enables optimized performance across a broader range of applications.
Source: Cray (press release)