SEATTLE, WA and LOS ANGELES, CA -- 09/26/2005 -- Global supercomputer leader Cray Inc. (NASDAQ: CRAY) today announced that it is working closely with Mitrionics, Inc. of Lund, Sweden, to provide users of the award-winning Cray XD1™ supercomputer with a fast and simple way to implement application-accelerating field-programmable gate array (FPGA) technology. Mitrionics' Mitrion Virtual Processor and Mitrion Software Development Kit make it possible for supercomputer users to program FPGAs integrated into the Cray XD1 system on a true software level, reducing the time and effort to take advantage of FPGA-based computation.
The Mitrionics solution makes FPGA-driven high-performance computing (HPC) accessible to researchers and engineers who have no hardware design experience. Through the Mitrion Virtual Processor, FPGAs can be programmed purely by software development techniques. This requires much shorter development time than hardware design techniques. The result is "pushbutton" software-programming-to-hardware-performance. Application acceleration with the Mitrion Virtual Processor gives users a powerful tool for making breakthrough discoveries and solving problems in the life sciences, physical sciences and a variety of industries.
"A Cray XD1 supercomputer equipped with a Mitrion Virtual Processor provides a powerful yet accessible combination for HPC users," said Mitrionics CEO Anders Dellson. "For users without hardware experience, FPGAs are difficult to program. Even simple computational algorithms can take months to program, resulting in very inflexible designs. With our Mitrion Platform, you don't have to be an electrical engineer to program an FPGA. As few as 180 lines of code in the Mitrion C Programming Language can generate as many as 150,000 lines of VHDL hardware code."
"The Cray XD1 system's FPGA-based reconfigurable computing feature turns Virtex 4 FPGAs into tightly integrated co-processors that can be programmed to accelerate key components of some HPC applications far beyond what is possible with scalar processing on microprocessors alone," said Amar Shan, product manager for the Cray XD1 supercomputer. "We are very happy to be collaborating with Mitrionics on tools that make the Cray XD1 application acceleration feature more accessible to users."
"With this offering, Cray and Mitrionics are contributing significantly to the advancement of high-performance reconfigurable computing, and to its accessibility by the people who need it the most, namely domain scientists," stated Dr. Tarek El-Ghazawi, a professor of computer engineering and the director of the High-Performance Computing Lab (HPCL) at the George Washington University. "The Cray XD1 supercomputer is an impressive FPGA-equipped system that is complemented by the Mitrionics Platform, a modern high-level programming paradigm, which lets users program FPGAs for acceleration without hardware design knowledge."
Advantages of FPGAs
Users of a Cray XD1 system equipped with FPGAs are able to accelerate their applications by programming the FPGAs to act like high-speed, specialized co-processors. The FPGA devices take some of the computational load off the main processors by running special subroutines that speed up parts of the application's code. As a result, users can solve complex problems in less time without having to increase the size and power budget of their computing platforms.
This performance-enhancing technology is known as reconfigurable computing because the FPGAs can be configured as the application runs to optimize efficiency. Application types that can benefit from this technique include seismic engineering, astrophysics, biotechnology, financial modeling and other compute-intensive areas of study.
For information about the availability of the Mitrion Virtual Processor and Software Development Kit for the Cray XD1 supercomputer, contact Cray at firstname.lastname@example.org or Mitrionics at email@example.com.
About the Cray XD1 Supercomputer
The Cray XD1 supercomputer combines direct-connect system architecture, HPC-optimized Linux, management and reconfigurable computing technologies to deliver exceptional performance on real-world applications. Purpose-built for demanding HPC applications such as computational chemistry, environmental forecasting and computer-aided engineering, the Cray XD1 system lets users simulate, analyze and solve complex problems more quickly and accurately. The x86-based Cray XD1 system supports a broad range of 32- and 64-bit HPC applications on AMD Opteron™ single- or dual- core processors. The Cray XD1 system also provides application acceleration capabilities using FPGA technology tightly connected to the direct-connect structure.
About Cray Inc.
As the global leader in HPC, Cray provides innovative supercomputing systems that enable scientists and engineers in government, industry and academia to meet both existing and future computational challenges. Building on years of experience in designing, developing, marketing and servicing the world's most advanced supercomputers, Cray offers a comprehensive portfolio of HPC systems that deliver unrivaled sustained performance on a wide range of applications. Go to www.cray.com for more information.
About Mitrionics Inc.
Mitrionics Inc. is a wholly owned U.S. subsidiary of Mitrionics AB based in Lund, Sweden. The company was founded in 2000 and forged key industry relationships in 2004 with Silicon Graphics, Nallatech, and others as its first pre-release software technology was demonstrated to select partners and customers. The Mitrion Platform includes the Mitrion Virtual Processor and Mitrion Software Development Kit which enable FPGAs (Field Programmable Gate Arrays) to be programmed easier and faster than ever before possible, thereby providing customers with revolutionary computer power for their most critical applications. The Mitrionics technology makes high performance computing accessible to an entire new market of scientists and developers previously unable to benefit from HPC because of high prices, complex design skills needed, and extremely long development times. For more information, visit the company Web site at www.mitrionics.com, or call 310-558-9495, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Safe Harbor Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements. There are certain factors that could cause Cray's execution plans to differ materially from those anticipated by the statements above. These include the technical challenges of developing high-performance computing systems, the successful porting of application programs to Cray computer systems, reliance on third-party suppliers, Cray's ability to keep up with rapid technological change and Cray's ability to compete against larger, more established companies and innovative competitors. For a discussion of these and other risks, see "Factors That Could Affect Future Results" in Cray's most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q filed with the SEC.
Cray is a registered trademark, and Cray XD1 is a trademark, of Cray Inc. AMD, AMD Opteron and combinations thereof are trademarks of Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.