|The Leading Source for Global News and Information Covering the Ecosystem of High Productivity Computing / November 6, 2007|
MAYNARD, Mass., Nov. 6 -- SiCortex, the emerging leader in compact, low power Linux clusters, today introduced the SC072 "Catapult," a 72 processor cluster in a whisper-quiet, low-power deskside cabinet. The Catapult, priced at under $15,000, fills a gaping hole in the high performance computing (HPC) application development infrastructure by providing routine personal access to large numbers of processors. The Catapult, like all of SiCortex's systems, features a standard Linux environment, enabling applications written and tested on the 72 processor machine to run on other SiCortex systems and be easily ported to the world's largest supercomputers.
A survey of industrial HPC users by the Council on Competitiveness found a growing gap between the capabilities of modern HPC systems and availability of application software that can use them efficiently. Until now, application development has been hamstrung by lack of access to high processor count systems. SiCortex has broken this productivity barrier by extending its product line down to a high processor count system that can sit beside every developer's desk.
"High performance computers commonly have thousands of processors today, but cost considerations dictate that only a small fraction are available to developers," said Dr. Christopher Kerr of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. "The Catapult will make an enormous difference in programmer productivity by providing a deskside resource for high processor count development."
SiCortex has introduced a new concept in high-performance computing by implementing a complete cluster node on a chip, including six 64-bit processors, multiple memory controllers, a high-performance cluster interconnect and a PCIexpress connection to storage and internetworking. With a total of 72 processors, 48 GB memory, and 3 PCIexpress ports, the Catapult draws less than 200 watts of power and fits in standard PC chassis. This eliminates the heat and fan noise issues that have previously made it impossible to put such a large cluster in a deskside environment.
"The HPC industry is increasingly challenged by the reality that applications developed on one or two processors almost never scale to hundreds, much less thousands," said SiCortex CEO Dr. John Mucci. "When you start with 50 or more processors, however, you've opened the door to the development of an entirely new generation of high performance software."
SiCortex, the emerging leader in compact, low power Linux clusters, is dedicated to the proliferation of open teraflop computing to a wide variety of users by providing "Teraflops from Milliwatts." Founded in 2003 by a respected team of computer industry executives, the company is backed by a number of top tier investors, including Chevron Technology Ventures, Flagship Ventures, JK&B Capital, Polaris Venture Partners and Prism VentureWorks. For more information, visit http://www.sicortex.com/.