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IBM Splices New Supercomputer From Blue Gene

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Dubbed the Watson Blue Gene (BGW) system, the most powerful privately owned supercomputer debuted in New York State today.

It consists of twenty refrigerator-sized racks and boasts a processing speed of 91.29 teraflops. As it comes online, BGW will be one of the top three supercomputers in the world, according to an IBM press release.

IBM Splices New Supercomputer From Blue Gene

IBM scientists will explore how BGW might help progress in many fields. While business applications will be among these, they anticipate gains in fields like life sciences, quantum chemistry, and fluid dynamics.

One of the first applications to be deployed on BGW will be Blue Matter. Initial results on Blue Matter, which is used to run protein dynamics simulations important to drug development, were published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society in April 2005.

Further, IBM intends to actively seek academic and industrial research, as part of the Department of Energy’s Innovative and Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment (INCITE) program.

The program seeks computationally intensive, large-scale research projects and encourages proposals from universities, other research institutions and industry.

BGW will also be used by IBM’s Center for Business Optimization (CBO) — a new consulting and software unit that taps IBM’s math scientists, industry and deep computing expertise to tackle clients’ previously unsolvable problems.

For example, high-precision weather forecasting software will feed predictive models for such diverse applications as disaster response, utility supply/demand forecasting, agricultural maintenance scheduling and transportation planning.

IBM anticipates that Blue Gene’s combination of high performance with smaller size, cost and power consumption has brought supercomputing technology to the point where it can now be made more widely available.

No word yet on whether BGW runs Solitaire, though.

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.

IBM Splices New Supercomputer From Blue Gene
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