HPC Veteran Charlie Wuischpard Joins Optical Startup Ayar Labs

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Today Ayar Labs announced that Charlie Wuischpard, former vice president and general manager at Intel, has joined Ayar Labs as chief executive officer (CEO) and a member of the board of directors (Board).

We are thrilled to welcome Charlie to Ayar Labs as we enter our next stage of growth,” said Wright-Gladstein. “With his track record of driving growth in both small and large companies, forming deep trusted relationships with high performance computing industry participants, and delivering value to stakeholders, we know he will lead Ayar Labs to growth in the advanced computing and data center markets.” The company has just raised a $24 million Series A led by Playground Global, with participation from Founders Fund, GlobalFoundries, and Intel Capital.

Ayar Labs is making computing faster and more energy efficient by using light to move data between chips instead of electricity. The company replaces copper with optical I/O “chiplets” and multi-port, multi-wavelength laser supplies to provide orders of magnitude improvement in data movement as measured by density, bandwidth, latency, and energy efficiency. The company was formed by the inventors of the first CMOS microprocessor chip to communicate using light at MIT, UC Berkeley, and CU Boulder; a breakthrough that was the result of a 10-year research collaboration funded by DARPA. For more information, visit www.ayarlabs.com.

Wuischpard served as Intel’s vice president and general manager of High-Performance Computing (HPC) and subsequently Rack Scale Design (RSD) from January 2014 through April 2018. Wuischpard started his career as a chip designer at IBM, where he spent 17 years assuming increasing levels of responsibility before leaving for senior leadership roles at a number of successful venture-backed companies. From 2007 until joining Intel in 2014, Wuischpard was the President and CEO of Penguin Computing, one of the fastest growing HPC and cloud data center systems specialists.

To maintain the incredible computing advances that Moore’s Law has traditionally delivered, new innovations and architectures will be needed,” said Wuischpard. “Optical connectivity will increasingly replace copper in future systems architectures, and I was blown away by the patented technology that the founding team and their research groups have developed over more than a decade. I couldn’t be happier to join this dedicated team and work with them to help realize the full potential of the technology.”

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