Blue Waters, a supercomputer that's expected to boast sustained speeds of a thousand trillion operations a second (a petaflop), is now being installed at the University of Illinois after more than four years in development. The project began back in 2007 with the backing of the National Science Foundation, and since then more than one vendor has attempted to tackle the problem — IBM worked on Blue Waters for three years until it gave up in August, 2011 due to technical and cost concerns, after which Cray took over the project. The supercomputer is built with more than 235 Cray XE6 cabinets, using AMD Opteron 6200 processors, and will also utilize more than 30 cabinets of an upcoming Cray XK6 computer with Nvidia Tesla GPUs. Blue Waters will take about nine months to install, and its creators hope that it will allow researchers to create breakthroughs in multiple fields of science — the university says that it will help study things like the formation of the cosmos, the behavior of hurricanes and tornadoes, and other highly complex systems.
Blue Waters supercomputer installation begins, promises a petaflop of processing power
Blue Waters, a supercomputer that will boast sustained speeds of a thousand trillion operations a second (a petaflop), is now being installed at the University of Illinois after more than four years in development.