Tera Computer Co. buys Cray from SGI and becomes Cray Inc.

Tera Computer Co. buys Cray from SGI and becomes Cray Inc.

By Susan M. Menke

GCN Staff

MARCH 2—SGI today announced the sale of its Cray Research vector supercomputer subsidiary to Tera Computer Co. of Seattle for an undisclosed amount in cash and stock.

Tera Computer spokesman Lew Phelps said the combined companies, to be renamed Cray Inc., will continue SGI's effort to build ever-faster supercomputers for the Energy Department's Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative. ASCI hardware executes trillions of floating-point operations per second.

Phelps said the acquisition "will not affect continued use or support" of existing SGI Cray systems.

Numerous SGI Cray machines have made the list of the world's top 500 supercomputers, updated twice yearly by Mannheim University in Germany, at www.top500.org. Three-year-old Tera Computer last year sold one of its eight-way Multithreaded Architecture (MTA) systems to the San Diego Supercomputer Center in California.

Phelps said Tera Computer plans to continue development of the vector Cray SV2, which has Defense Department funding and is scheduled for release in 2002. Tera will transfer its MTA operating environment to all new Cray Inc. proprietary processor hardware, and it will own the Cray SV1, T3E and T90 lines. SGI's 800 Cray employees will be offered positions, Phelps said.

SGI, having already divested its low-end hardware business, will continue to focus on scalable technical servers such as the Origin line, and the Onyx and Onyx2 visual workstations. SGI will retain rights to its Non-Uniform Memory Architecture.

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