NEC High Performance Computing Europe (HPCE) and ClusterVision have completed a large compute and storage cluster installation at the Council for the Central Laboratory of the Research Councils (CCLRC)'s Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL) in Oxfordshire (UK). The 53 TB storage and 160 processor compute clusters were installed for the e-Science Centre of the UK CCLRC to boost its capacity to store and process data for the particle physics Grid computing project GridPP.
The new storage cluster at RAL CCLRC comprises 11 dual Intel Xeon servers, 22 Infortrend IDE RAID storage units and 264 high-capacity hard drives. The total storage capacity of the cluster will be 53 TeraBytes. This storage capacity is the equivalent of more than 2500 standard desktop PC hard disks which could store the equivalent of more than 81,231 CDROMs.
The new compute cluster contains 80 rack-mounted servers with 160 Intel Xeon 2.67 GHz CPUs with a theoretical peak performance of 850 GigaFLOPs, or 850 billion calculations per second.
Both clusters were delivered and installed by ClusterVision in a short time frame as the capacity of the previous compute and storage facilities had reached its maximum usage. Dr Andrew Sansum, Technical Manager for the GridPP computing service at CCLRC, said: "The NEC / ClusterVision consortium was selected from a large number of potential suppliers for their proven experience with similar large-scale implementations and their well-thought-through design which also offered the best price/performance."
About the Council for the Central Laboratory of the Research Councils (CCLRC)
The CCLRC is an independent, non-departmental public body of the UK Government's Office of Science and Technology. The CCLRC operates three world class institutions supporting the research community by providing access to advanced facilities and extensive scientific and technical expertise. (www.clrc.ac.uk)
GridPP is a collaboration of particle physicists and computing scientists from the UK and CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, in order to prepare for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) that will turn on in 2007 at CERN and produce an enormous stream of data (millions of GigaBytes) that must be stored and processed (using up to one hundred thousand processors). No single computer centre will be able to provide both the storage and computing facilities for the entire LHC operation. Hence distribution of computation and data via the Grid are essential. Scientists involved in GridPP expect to play a major role in the analysis of data from the LHC and the exciting discoveries that are anticipated. (www.gridpp.ac.uk)
About the NEC HPCE / ClusterVision Partnership
NEC HPCE and ClusterVision have been partners in the implementation and support of large-scale Linux supercomputer clusters since early 2003. As part of the agreement, ClusterVision has become NEC's cluster solution provider for Northern Europe, including the UK, Ireland, Benelux and Scandinavia. ClusterVision is also official reseller of NEC's TX7 Itanium 2 based shared memory supercomputer. (See also: CLUSTERVISION AND NEC HPC EUROPE PARTNER ON LINUX SUPERCOMPUTER CLUSTERS)
About NEC HPC Europe
NEC High Performance Computing Systems Europe GmbH was founded in 2003 as an independent NEC subsidiary. Its predecessor, NEC European Supercomputer Systems had been active in Europe since 1991. The company supplies high performance computing solutions, services and equipment to the European Market. The NEC HPCE staff consists of over 70 persons and its main office is located in Düsseldorf, Germany. Further offices are located in Paris, Basingstoke (UK), Milan, Amsterdam, Manno (Switzerland) and Stuttgart.
ClusterVision are specialists in the design, implementation and support of large-scale compute, storage and database clusters. The technical team at ClusterVision has designed, implemented and supported some of the largest and most complex compute and storage clusters in the UK and the Netherlands. Customers include Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Natural History Museum, Imperial College London and Manchester University in the UK, and Delft Hydraulics, TNO and the University of Leiden in the Netherlands. ClusterVision has offices in Amsterdam and London.
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