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NCI Supercomputer best in Australia, 24th in world

ThNCI_Raijin-web2e National Computational Infrastructure’s new Fujitsu Primergy Supercomputer has debuted at number one in Australia, and number 24 in the world on the TOP500 list of best supercomputers, released overnight.

The result, announced at SC12, an annual Supercomputing Conference held in Salt Lake City, confirms that the National Computational Infrastructure (NCI) is home to the most powerful computer system available to researchers in Australia.

Installed at The Australian National University, the supercomputer has been funded by the Australian Government under its Super Science Initiative to advance Australian computational research and, in particular, climate change, earth system science and national water management.

Director of NCI, Professor Lindsay Botten, said that the announcement is great recognition of the recently completed supercomputer’s capacity.

“Advanced computational methods form an increasingly essential component of high-impact research. In many cases they underpin discoveries that cannot be achieved by other means, and provide the platform on which to sustain innovation at an internationally competitive level,” said Professor Botten.

“The NCI delivers a world-class, high-end computing service to Australian researchers across a broad range of fields, including climate and earth system sciences, astrophysics, computational biology and chemistry, medicine, physics and photonics.”

ANU Pro Vice-Chancellor (e-Strategies) Professor Robin Stanton said that the University was proud to continue its leading role in developing Australia’s research infrastructure, and particularly its computational facilities.

The supercomputer has approximately 57,500 cores, 160 TBytes of main memory, and 12 PBytes of disk – comparable in scale to about 30,000 desktop computers working together in parallel – and capable of achieving an internationally competitive peak performance of 1,200 TFlops.

NCI is a formal collaboration with partners ANU, CSIRO, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology and Geoscience Australia, along with a number of other research-intensive universities, and the Australian Research Council. NCI provides expert support and development for application and system software, a range of consultancy, training and outreach programs, and access to high-end computational facilities for industry, including start-up companies.

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