Saudi super to be a Blue Gene

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Saudi Arabia is executing a program to build up world-leading academic institutions, and part of that is to add significant computing to the mix. Today we have news from Business Intelligence Middle East about the new large HPC system headed for KAUST

IBM logoBut Saudi Arabia is turning its oil wealth in a new direction. This supercomputer, which is being built by IBM, will be located at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), a research university that was announced in 2007 and is due to open in a year from now.

…The system, named Shaheen, which is the Arabic word for Peregrine Falcon, is a 16-rack IBM Blue Gene/P System with 65,536 processor cores delivering 222 Teraflops (222 trillion operations per second.)

IBM estimates that Shaheen will rank about number six in the world when completed, but the university also has plans to quickly add capacity. The data centre it is building will be large enough to hold 500 racks, and although that includes space for storage and other IT equipment, there will be a lot of room to grow.

TeraFLOPS now, with plans for peta and exa on the books.