Japanese technology giant, Fujitsu, has won a bid to provide supercomputing to the Australian National University, aiding advanced research in areas such as climate, weather, astronomy, physics, and geosciences.
The supercomputer will be installed within the university’s National Computational Infrastructure (NCI), which provides high-end computational services to Australian research community.
The supercomputer will have the power of 56,000 computers working in parallel, and disk storage equivalent of 20,000 computers – but working much faster, according to Fujitsu. This includes a petascale performance of 1.2 petaflops, or 1,200,000,000,000,000 floating point operations per second, and 12 petabytes storage capacity, Fujitsu said in a statement.
The NCI facilities will include a new data centre, due for completion in September, and the supercomputer, which will be operational by January. Fujitsu is deploying its PRIMEHPC FX10 supercomputer, which is derived from technology used in its K Computer, which is the world’s fastest supercomputer.
“The new supercomputer will provide Australia with a much needed capability to meet national challenges,” ANU vice-chancellor professor, Ian Young, said in the statement. “It will take Australia’s research to new levels in areas such as weather and climate modelling, computational chemistry, particle physics, astronomy, material science, microbiology, nanotechnology and photonics.”
ANU receives funding for NCI from the Federal Department of Innovation, Industry, Science, Research and Tertiary Education under its Super Science initiative. It is also supported by a partnership involving the CSIRO; Bureau of Meteorology and Geoscience Australia.
The installation will be undertaken by Fujitsu’s combined supercomputing expertise from Australia and Japan with support from Fujitsu Australia engineering teams and sub-contract partners.
“Once completed, the NCI Supercomputer will be one of the largest and fastest computers in the world," added Mike Foster, CEO, Fujitsu A/NZ.
Fujitsu's project partners include APC power and cooling; Brocade and Xenon/Mellanox InfiniBand switching; Data Direct Networks high speed storage; and Intel chipsets.