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DKFZ Installs Convey Hybrid-core Computers to Speed Next-Generation Sequencing
Date:8/15/2013

Richardson, TX (PRWEB) August 15, 2013

Convey Computer today announced that the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) in Heidelberg, Germany, has installed two Convey hybrid-core (HC) computers. The Convey HC-2ex platforms are being used to accelerate the center’s next-generation sequencing (NGS) pipeline, saving them time and reducing energy consumption.

DKFZ tested their first Convey hybrid-core computer in the summer of 2012, using the server to accelerate a portion of their next-generation pipeline. Results were extremely positive; one of their initial jobs went from over 18 hours on an 8 core system to a mere 48 minutes on the Convey server.

Based on that success, DKFZ purchased two Convey HC-2ex servers a few months later. These hybrid-core systems were integrated into an existing 1,600 compute core cluster. The Convey systems are now routinely used at DKFZ in the production analysis for all BWA algorithms.

“We are extremely pleased with the Convey systems. Depending on the data, we are typically seeing between 10-20x acceleration, which is substantial,” explained Dr. Benedikt Brors, Group Leader Computational Oncology, Division Theoretical Bioinformatics at DKFZ. “And our entire workflow from one end to the other is reduced by a factor of two.”

Convey’s hybrid-core architecture pairs classic Intel® x86 microprocessors with a coprocessor comprised of field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs). Particular algorithms—BWA-based alignment, for example—are optimized and translated into code that’s loadable onto the coprocessor at runtime. The result is order of magnitude performance increases with less power, space and cooling requi
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