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Time Lapse Video: Building the Attaway Supercomputer at Sandia

In this time lapse video, technicians build the new Attaway supercomputer from Penguin Computing at Sandia National Labs. In November 2019, the Attaway was #94 on the TOP500 Supercomputers list.

On February 28, 2019, Sandians lost a long-time colleague and friend, Steve Attaway. Steve spent over thirty years at Sandia, and during that time he helped bring big, seemingly impossible ideas into realization. The Attaway supercomputer is named after him. Just as Steve did in the past, Attaway will tackle the most difficult challenges of the future. Steve, you will be missed.

The Attaway system was procured under NNSA’s Tri-Laboratory Commodity Technology Systems program, or CTS-1, to bolster computing for national security at Los Alamos, Sandia and Lawrence Livermore national laboratories. The resulting deployment of these supercomputing clusters is among world’s largest Open Compute-based installations, a major validation of Penguin Computing’s leadership in Open Compute high-performance computing architecture.

CTS-1 shows how the Open Compute and Open Rack design elements can be applied to high-performance computing and deliver similar benefits as its original development for Internet companies,” said Philip Pokorny, Chief Technology Officer, Penguin Computing. “We continue to improve Tundra for both the public and private sectors with exciting new compute and storage models coming in the near future.”


About Steve Attaway

To honor the late Steve Attaway and all his contributions to the HPC community, the Attaway supercomputer is built to be a bleeding-edge machine that adds to Sandia’s HPC capacity system. Sandia researchers who require HPC resources will be able to use The Attaway for solving big problems like Project “Burnt Frost.”

Steve Attaway

In 2008, the President of the United States asked engineers to assess the feasibility of shooting down an orbiting US satellite from a moving Navy vessel in the open ocean. It was called Project “Burnt Frost,” a six-week priority mission to address a potential National Security threat. Among the engineers assigned to this project was Steve Attaway, a Sandia National Laboratories high-performance computing expert. Without his expertise and the use of HPC, the mission wouldn’t have been successful.

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