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NOAA installation finishes up nine year contract with IBM

From a story at HPCwire, news that NOAA has just finished installation of two new IBM P575 systems for its forecast mission

IBM logo“This new technology will provide us with more sophisticated models of the earth’s land, ocean and atmosphere, giving meteorologists better accuracy and precision in both long-term and short-term forecasting,” said Jack Hayes, director of NOAA’s National Weather Service. “More accurate weather forecasts allow the National Weather Service to warn individual citizens and whole communities about impending dangerous weather well in advance so they can take action to protect lives and property.”

The new supercomputers, based on IBM Power 575 Systems, are four times faster than the previous system, with the ability to make 69.7 trillion calculations per second. Higher computation speed allows meteorologists to rapidly refine and update severe weather forecasts as dangerous weather develops and threatens U.S. communities. Billions of bytes of weather observations are fed into the system each day, including temperature, wind, precipitation, atmospheric pressure, and other oceanographic and satellite information taken from the ground, air, sea and space.

This is the final phase of the nine-year, $180M contract NOAA had with IBM for supercomputers. It seems the next phase of NOAA’s computational business will be less hands on as they outsource at least some of their heavy computations to the DOE.

UPDATE: A small update from some info I got from the company via email, this system is the same Power575/p6 4.7 GHz system that NIWA and UK Met are using. Seems to be a popular system with the weather crowd.

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