World-class research at the University of Southampton is getting a multi-million pound boost with the purchase of a new supercomputer, built using IBM iDataPlex server technology and capable of over 74 trillion calculations per second.
The new supercomputer, containing more than 8000 processors, will be used by leading-edge researchers across the University to make highly complex computations in fields ranging from cancer research to climate change. It will be the first IBM System iDataPlex in a UK university and one of the 100 most powerful supercomputers in the world (based on the June 2009 Top 500 list at www.top500.org).
That’s actually 2,000 quadcore Xeons there to come up with the 8,000 number. The racks have the water-cooled rear door, and the system includes 100 TB of IBM DS4700 storage. The university will use the £3million machine to support calculations related to the design of aero engines and aircraft and for other medical research
Other major users will be researchers in the University’s Complex Systems Simulation Doctoral Training Centre, which carries out high-quality, sophisticated simulations in research areas such as climate, pharmaceuticals, bioscience, nanoscience, medical and chemical systems, transport, the environment, engineering and computing.
“Using these new facilities we will see simulation modelling used to drive the design of new drugs tested on simulated organisms, to shape our response to climate change, to redesign our transport systems, and even to explore the origins of life on earth. The quality of simulations such as these is becoming crucial in the modern world,” says the Centre’s director Dr Seth Bullock.