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Posted: January 24, 2008

Moscow State University Buys Russia's First IBM Blue Gene Supercomputer

(Nanowerk News) Moscow State University (MSU) and IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced details of an agreement to install a Blue Gene/P supercomputer at the Department of Computational Mathematics and Cybernetics. The new supercomputer, the first installation of the world famous Blue Gene computer in Russia, will be used for fundamental research in nanotechnology, new materials and life sciences.
“As Russia’s leading academic institution, we are very proud that Moscow State University should join the ranks of the world’s leading research organisations to tackle some of the most complex and computer intensive problems known to man-kind – from astrophysics, to molecular modelling,” said Viktor Sadovnichiy, Rector of Moscow State University. “This agreement with IBM heralds a new era of supercomputing in Russia”.
Moscow State University has agreed to buy two racks of the Blue Gene/P system containing 8.192 densely packed microprocessors. The resulting supercomputer is expected to run at 27.8 trillion operations per second (Tflop/s), 2,600 times faster than today’s fastest home PC. Based on the current list, the MSU system would today be amongst the top fifty most powerful supercomputers in the world. Blue Gene uses a fraction of the energy of Russia’s other most powerful supercomputers and requires significantly less physical space to house the system.
One rack of Blue Gene/P is equivalent in size to a domestic refrigerator and is at least seven times more energy-efficient than any other design. The ‘modular’ and scalable design of Blue Gene means that MSU researchers can add racks as computing requirements grow.
“IBM is working with top universities and government agencies around the world to deliver the next generation of supercomputers that combine different types of processors to increase compute power while reduce energy and space costs,” said Kirill Korniliev, Country General Manager, IBM East Europe & Asia. “Our agreement with Moscow State University demonstrates not only our commitment to Russia’s leading university, but to Russia’s national scientific agenda.”
Blue Gene/P is the second generation of the world’s most powerful supercomputer. Since 2004 IBM’s Blue Gene has led the Top500 list of the world’s most powerful supercomputers ( Because of its unique design that allows for the dense packaging of processors, memory and interconnecting circuits, Blue Gene is also the world’s most energy efficient and compact supercomputer.
MSU plans for the system to be operational by April 2008.
Source: IBM
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