Printer Friendly
The Free Library
22,725,466 articles and books

Big-league computing.



The race to calculate at world-record speeds has two new entries.

Last month saw the unveiling of a new supercomputer, called Blue Mountain, capable of calculating in the range of 3 trillion operations per second. Located at the Los Alamos Los Alamos (lôs ăl`əmōs', lŏs), uninc. town (1990 pop. 11,455), seat of Los Alamos co., N central N.Mex. It is on a long mesa extending from the Jemez Mts. The U.S.  (N.M.) National Laboratory, the machine consists of 48 commercially available Silicon Graphics Cray Origin2000 computers yoked together. This supercomputer can handle enormous amounts of data, run detailed simulations, and create sophisticated graphics.

At the same time, an advanced computer named Blue Pacific began operating at the Lawrence Livermore Lawrence Livermore may refer to:
  • Larry Livermore musician, record producer and music journalist.
  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
 (Calif.) National Laboratory (LLNL LLNL - Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory ). Built by IBM (International Business Machines Corporation, Armonk, NY, www.ibm.com) The world's largest computer company. IBM's product lines include the S/390 mainframes (zSeries), AS/400 midrange business systems (iSeries), RS/6000 workstations and servers (pSeries), Intel-based servers (xSeries) , the machine operates at a peak speed of about 3.9 trillion calculations per second. Researchers have already used the computer to model the molecular behavior of explosives, simulate the trajectories of neutrons generated during laser-induced nuclear fusion, perform quantum-chemistry calculations, and study three-dimensional turbulent mixing in a supernova.

Both supercomputers are products of the Department of Energy's Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative. This effort is a key element in the development of methods to assess the safety and reliability of the nation's aging arsenal of nuclear weapons without underground nuclear testing Underground nuclear testing refers to test detonations of nuclear weapons that are performed underground. Most nuclear tests have historically been performed underground, in order to prevent nuclear fallout from entering into the atmosphere.  (SN: 10/19/96, p. 254). The installation of a supercomputer at the Sandia National Laboratories Sandia National Laboratories, which is managed and operated by the Sandia Corporation (a wholly owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Corporation), is a major United States Department of Energy research and development national laboratory with two locations, one in Albuquerque, New  in Albuquerque, N.M., in 1997 represented the first step in that effort (SN: 1/4/97, p. 7; 7/5/97, p. 5).

Earlier this year, the Energy Department announced plans for pushing computer technology by the year 2004 to speeds of 100 trillion calculations per second. In one step toward that goal, IBM has a contract to develop a computer for LLNL capable of operating at 10 trillion operations per second. The, machine will use the same technology as did Deep Blue, the chess computer that triumphed over world chess champion Garry Kasparov (SN: 5/17/97, p. 300).
COPYRIGHT 1998 Science Service, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1998, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

 Reader Opinion

Title:

Comment:



 

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:Department of Energy develops 2 new supercomputers
Publication:Science News
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Dec 12, 1998
Words:304
Previous Article:White-Coat Hypertension.
Next Article:Prize-winning calculations.
Topics:



Related Articles
CRAY SUPERCOMPUTER USED TO CONFIRM UNIVERSE IS FLAT & WILL EXPAND FOREVER.
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY SELECTS ETNUS DEBUGGER/ANALYZER FOR USE IN WORLD'S FASTEST SUPERCOMPUTER.
IBM SUPERCOMPUTER HELPS U.S. GOVERNMENT IDENTIFY OBJECTS IN SPACE.
IBM DELIVERS WORLD'S MOST POWERFUL UNCLASSIFIED SUPERCOMPUTER, AIMING FOR BREAKTHROUGH IN FUEL-EFFICIENT AUTOMOBILES.
CRAY INC. SUPERCOMPUTERS ARE LARGEST AND FASTEST AMONG LEADING VENDORS ON WORLD'S "TOP500 SUPERCOMPUTERS" LIST.
IBM TO LINK US GOVT LAB COMPUTERS IN POWERFUL GRID.
IBM to build world's fastest supercomputers for Dept of Energy.
Cray Inc. announces $3.5 million order for Red Storm product.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2014 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters