December 15, 2006
CCRT (Centre de Calcul Recherche et Technologie), the Center for Research and Technology Computing in France, has awarded Bull the contract to build a supercomputer delivering in excess of 43 teraflops.
The CCRT's supercomputer will be made available for the scientific and industrial communities to use in major areas of research, particularly aeronautical engineering, energy, life sciences and environmental research. In particular, the system will be used by the members of the CCRT, including the French Atomic Energy Authority (the CEA), Electricite de France (EDF) and three companies from the SAFRAN Group: SNECMA, Turbomeca and Techspace Aero.
The new supercomputer will comprise a cluster of Bull NovaScale servers, equipped with Itanium processors. It will be integrated into the CEA's computing complex to create one of the world's most significant scientific computing infrastructures enabling the research community to benefit from synergies between programs in defense, industry and other areas, as well as the fruits of the digital simulation program.
"The CCRT's decision to commission this new supercomputer signals our desire to ensure that France - and Europe more widely - has a computing complex that is fit to match the industrial and economic challenges we will have to face over the next few years," stressed Christophe Behar, President of the CCRT.
"We are very proud that the CCRT has chosen Bull. For us, it is the recognition of our ability to develop the innovative technologies that are so essential to maintain French and European sovereignty in areas that are vitally important for their future," commented Philippe Miltin, Vice-President of Bull's Products and Systems Division.
The CCRT's supercomputer, designed by Bull, will be made up of a cluster of NovaScale servers, including 848 processing nodes, and 26 dedicated I/O and systems administration nodes. Each node will feature four Intel Itanium 2 dual-core processors. The system will be operated via an HPC platform, specially optimized by Bull, and featuring the Linux operating system, NovaScale Master (the system administration software suite developed by Bull), the Intel development environment and the Lustre file system from CFS.
The NovaScale servers will be connected by a high performance InfiniBand network, supplied by Voltaire. The data storage infrastructure, also designed and integrated by Bull, will offer in excess of 420 TB of disk storage capacity.
"We are pleased that CCRT chose Bull NovaScale servers with Intel Itanium processors to deliver a leading European supercomputer dedicated to civil and industrial research", said Richard Dracott, Intel's General Manager for High Performance Computing, "The high performance and scale of dual-core Itanium processors will support breakthroughs in the research and innovation that CCRT delivers to France and the European community".
The CCRT supercomputer will be deployed in early 2007. Expansions of the system are planned to ensure that, by the end of 2008, it will deliver several tens of teraflops of additional power.
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