New Data-Analysis System to Speed Research in Science, Energy, National Security
SEATTLE, WA, Sep 19, 2007 (MARKET WIRE via COMTEX News Network) -- Global supercomputer leader Cray Inc. (NASDAQ: CRAY) announced that
the Department of Energy's (DOE) Pacific Northwest National
Laboratory (PNNL) has taken delivery of the first-of-its-kind Cray
XMT supercomputer designed for data intensive computing research.
The Cray XMT system has a unique "massively multithreaded"
architecture and large global memory that is configured for
applications, such as data discovery, business intelligence,
bioinformatics and power grid analysis, that require access to
terabytes of data arranged in an unpredictable manner.
The random and unpredictable data access required by these efforts
has meant that they typically do not run well on conventional computer
systems, where performance is determined mainly by the speed at which
the memory can deliver information to the microprocessor. In many
large-scale applications of this kind, the processor is idle 80 to 90
percent of the time while waiting for data from memory.
The Cray XMT system is built to overcome memory bottlenecks with each
processor able to handle 128 independent threads. The entire system
is scalable to hundreds of thousands of threads -- portions of a
program that can run independently of and concurrently with other
portions of the program -- in shared memory.
"The result is a system that is ideal for data-intensive computing
and other applications with high levels of irregular memory access,"
said PNNL scientist Jarek Nieplocha.
"The Cray XMT system will offer PNNL the potential to substantially
accelerate data analysis and predictive analytics for many of our
clients' complex challenges in energy, national security and
fundamental science," said Moe Khaleel, director of computational
sciences and mathematics at PNNL. "I expect the new system will
provide researchers with levels of performance for data analysis that
they have never achieved before."
For example, PNNL researchers and colleagues at Cray have obtained
promising results in testing the massively multithreaded architecture
on several PNNL-developed applications, including one that constantly
monitors the state of the power grid. "Electrical power grid modeling
and analysis are critical to DOE," Nieplocha said, noting that
"speedups achieved on a developmental system at Cray's lab in Seattle
were better than ever reported for this application."
"Cray has traditionally led the supercomputer market with machines
designed for simulation; with the Cray XMT, we are entering into the
data analysis and network discovery market," said Jan Silverman, Cray
senior vice president of corporate strategy and business development.
"We're excited that PNNL's innovative researchers will be developing
software to take advantage of the unique features of the Cray XMT to
solve a broad range of important problems that could not have been
efficiently solved before."
The system also will be available to researchers at Washington State
University (WSU), increasing opportunities for collaborative science
and discovery. "This system represents a fundamentally new computer
architecture for solving grand challenge problems," said Behrooz
Shirazi, director of the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer
Science at WSU. "The Cray XMT will be a catalyst for fostering and
expanding cooperation among the researchers at PNNL, Cray and WSU."
The PNNL Cray XMT supercomputer is an early-release system installed
as part of a collaboration between Cray and PNNL to explore a variety
of new application areas on this innovative system. It is scheduled
to be upgraded to a production-level system in 2008. The
supercomputer is installed in the Applied Process Engineering
Laboratory, a user facility located near PNNL's campus in Richland,
About the Cray XMT Platform
For large data-driven problems that today exist in unrelated and
diverse data sets, massively multithreaded processing offers the
potential for breakthrough performance increases. Each processor in
the multithreaded Cray XMT system can handle up to 128 concurrent
threads. The system is designed to scale up to more than 8,000
processors, yielding more than one million concurrent threads that
can operate on as much as 128 terabytes (128 trillion bytes) of
shared physical memory. For more information about the Cray XMT
product and partner program, go to the Cray website at
About Cray Inc.
As a global leader in supercomputing, Cray provides highly advanced
supercomputers and world-class services and support to government,
industry and academia. Cray technology enables scientists and
engineers to achieve remarkable breakthroughs by accelerating
performance, improving efficiency and extending the capabilities of
their most demanding applications. Cray's Adaptive Supercomputing
vision will result in innovative next-generation products that
integrate diverse processing technologies into a unified
architecture, allowing customers to surpass today's limitations and
meeting the market's continued demand for realized performance. Go to
www.cray.com for more information.
About Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
PNNL (www.pnl.gov) is a DOE Office of Science national laboratory
that solves complex problems in energy, national security and the
environment, and advances scientific frontiers in the chemical,
biological, materials, environmental and computational sciences. PNNL
employs 4,200 staff, has a $750 million annual budget, and has been
managed by Ohio-based Battelle since the lab's inception in 1965.
Safe Harbor Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements. There are
certain factors that could cause Cray's execution plans to differ
materially from those anticipated by the statements above. Among
these are the technical challenges of developing high-performance
computing systems, including potential delays in hardware and
software development projects; Cray's ability to scale the system to
the targeted level of performance; timing and level of government
support for supercomputer purchases and research and development
activities; reliance on third-party suppliers, including delays in
availability of qualified parts from suppliers; timing of and
successful porting of application programs to new computing systems;
and successful passing of acceptance tests. For a discussion of these
and other risks, see "Risk Factors" in Cray's most recent Quarterly
Report on Form 10-Q filed with the SEC.
Cray is a registered trademark, and Cray XMT is a trademark, of Cray
Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
Image Available: http://www2.marketwire.com/mw/frame_mw?attachid=582001
SOURCE: Cray Inc.