New supercomputers headed to DOD
- By Matt Leonard
- Feb 22, 2018
Department of Defense research labs has ordered Hewlett Packard Enterprise supercomputers “to accelerate the development and acquisition of advanced national security capabilities,” according to a company statement.
Four HPE SGI 8600 systems are going to the Air Force Research Laboratory's DOD Supercomputing Resource Center at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base where they will be used to model current and advanced air, naval and ground weapon systems and platforms. Another three will be installed at the Navy DSRC to support advanced weapons capabilities and provide high reliability for the Navy's global weather modeling requirements.
The HPE SGI 8600 is a sixth-generation computer running 24-core Intel Xeon scalable processors that offers petaflop speed and scalability to thousands of nodes. Bill Mannel, the vice president and general manager of HPC and AI at Hewlett Packard Enterprise, said these types of machines are becoming vital to the goals of agencies like the Defense Department.
“The DOD’s continuous investment in supercomputing innovation is a clear testament to this development and an important contribution to U.S. national security,” Mannel said in a statement.
These new HPE computers were purchased as part of the High Performance Computing Modernization Program, which uses high performance computing to advance DOD objectives.
At the Army Research Laboratory, SGI ICE XA supercomputers were used to improve vehicle armor to better protect against IEDs. With the machines researchers analyzed vehicle animations -- that rotating the images, moving them back and forward in time, manipulating them and testing improvements much faster than could be done through physical experiments. The research led to a new, more effective armor that took less than four months to get into the battlefield, where it enabled a 20 percent reduction in fatalities.
Matt Leonard is a former reporter for GCN.