IBM exceeds expectations with supercomputer

Thursday June 29 by Claudia bournecnet
An IBM supercomputer designed for simulating nuclear explosions has turned out to be 23 percent faster than anticipated when the project began, IBM will announce tomorrow. The $110 million machine, called ASCI White, was assembled at IBM's test facility in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., and is being reassembled at its final home, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) in Livermore, Calif. The machine takes up two basketball courts worth of floor space, weighs 106 tons, and has 8,192 CPUs. It was clocked at 12.3 trillion calculations per second, nearly a quarter faster than the 10 "teraflop" figure specified in the contract, IBM said. The results are more than academic. The massive machine is a scaled-up version of an upcoming RS/6000 SP IBM server code-named "Nighthawk 2," due to debut in July. The Nighthawk 2 will be the first commercially released computer to use an IBM processor, the Power3-III.

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