LONDON The Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre (EPCC) based at the city’s university is to have the first IBM Blue Gene supercomputer to run in Europe. It will help chemists, biologists, physicists and environmental modellers to attack complex problems that cannot be solved on existing machines.
The computer at EPCC should give British research and industry affordable access to the computing capacity to address the most demanding challenges. It will also ensure that the University of Edinburgh maintains its lead in computational science.
Traditionally, greater computing speeds have been produced by shrinking the hardware components. But now this process is close to reaching its physical limits and Blue Gene’s design is intended to shrink cost, size and energy consumption without compromising speed: its performance-to-price ratio.
Director of Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre, Dr Arthur Trew, said, “EPCC's mission is to accelerate the effective exploitation of high performance computing. This development will help us deliver real benefits to our users. It also ensures that EPCC will continue to be the premier centre for computational science in Europe.” The new computer will be delivered and installed at EPCC later this year.