Lab is home to some speedy supercomputers

Lab is home to some speedy supercomputers

Los Alamos National Laboratory's ASCI Blue Mountain system recently set a world record by running the equivalent of 17.8 years of single-processor computing in 72 hours.

During the three-day period, more than 15,000 engineering simulations that required 10 hours each were executed across 31 of Blue Mountain's 48 SGI Origin2000 servers, or 65 percent of the machine, according to officials from SGI of Mountain View, Calif., which developed the supercomputer.

Blue Mountain has a peak processing capability of 3 trillion floating-point operations per second. The Los Alamos lab uses it to develop nuclear models for the Energy Department's Stockpile Stewardship Program.

The computer is powered by 48 128-processor commercial Origin2000 servers and two 128-processor SGI Onyx2 graphics supercomputers, which run SGI's Irix operating system and the InfiniteReality graphics subsystem. The system's Mips processors act as a single computer.

Blue Mountain is the third-fastest supercomputer in the world, according to a ranking of the top 500 supercomputers by the University of Tennessee at Knoxville and Mannheim University in Germany.

'Tony Lee Orr

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