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Roadrunner supercomputer puts research at a new scale
Date:6/12/2008

setts Institute of Technology.

The Roadrunner is the world's first supercomputer to achieve sustained operating performance speeds of one petaflop/s. In partnership with Los Alamos and the National Nuclear Security Administration, Roadrunner was built by IBM and will be housed at Los Alamos National Laboratory, where it will be used to perform calculations that will vastly improve the nation's ability to certify that the United States nuclear weapons stockpile is reliable without conducting underground nuclear tests. Roadrunner also will be used for science and engineering such as energy research, understanding dark energy and dark matter, materials properties and response, understanding complex neural and biological systems, and biomedical applications.

Roadrunner was built using commercially available hardware, including aspects of commercial game console technologies. Roadrunner has a unique hybrid design comprised of nodes containing two AMD OpteronTM dual-core processors plus four PowerXCell 8iTM processors used as computational accelerators. The accelerators are a special IBM-developed variant of the Cell processors used in the Sony PlayStation 3. Roadrunner uses a Linux operating system. The project's total cost is approximately $120 million.


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Contact: James E. Rickman
jamesr@lanl.gov
505-665-9203
DOE/Los Alamos National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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