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eResearch SA Selects SGI to Provide South Australia's Most Powerful HPC System

| Source: SGI

ADELAIDE, Australia, Oct. 4, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- SGI (Nasdaq:SGI), the trusted leader in technical computing, today announced that eResearch SA, the leading provider of eResearch technologies for researchers in South Australia selected SGI to provide infrastructure for its new high–performance computing (HPC) system, the Tizard machine.

Tizard will be the state's most powerful public research HPC system and it will be used to support researchers in many different fields including climate change, evolutionary biology, high-energy physics, applied mathematics, chemistry, medicine, genomics and agriculture. The SGI® HPC system is a powerful mix of different computing systems, all optimised to complete specific tasks faster than ever before. The unique combination of computing systems has been purchased specifically to support the computational demands of South Australia's leading scientists.

"The Tizard machine represents an exciting new era in South Australia's eResearch capability," said Dr Paul Coddington, deputy director of eResearch SA. "The Tizard will be of immense value to researchers at the University of Adelaide, University of South Australia, Flinders University and State Government research facilities and groups, providing a much wider range of computing modes and overall power than eRSA's existing supercomputer."

The SGI HPC Cluster system provides 2304 cores delivering 24 Teraflops. The system has 48 compute nodes each with 128GB of memory. There are an additional 17 nodes utilising 68 GPUs including NVIDIA® M2090 Tesla cards and two large memory nodes with 512GB and 1024GB of memory.

The new research infrastructure was purchased with funds from a Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities scheme grant. Chief investigator on the grant, Professor Derek Leinweber, Professor of Physics and Head of the School of Chemistry & Physics, will be one of the first users of the HPC machine. His research into Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD), the theory of the strong interaction, requires the use of the most powerful supercomputers that we can build.

"The installation of the Tizard machine will transform the way we perform these computations as we harness the power of dedicated graphics hardware, or GPUs," said Professor Leinweber.

Leading this transformation is Senior Research Associate Dr Waseem Kamleh, he said, "The massively parallel architecture of GPUs is not just suited for playing the latest video games, but can also be used to run our calculations up to 100 times faster when compared to running on standard CPUs alone. By exploiting this speedup we will be able to acquire the massive statistics needed to explore aspects of QCD that are otherwise unknown. This is crucial to discovering the dynamics of the basic building blocks of the universe."

"We are delighted to be partnering with eResearch SA on this project. By utilising the latest GPU and CPU technologies eResearch SA researchers now have the best resources available to solve the widest possible range of problems," said Nick Gorga, general manager, SGI Australia and New Zealand. "This is an exciting step forward in HPC capabilities for South Australia."

About eResearch SA

eResearch SA is a collaborative joint venture between the University of Adelaide, Flinders University and the University of South Australia. eResearch SA offers expert computing technology knowledge services and facilities to research, government and business sectors.

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