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Intel pushes supercomputing

HPC Nehalem-EX out next year
Mon Nov 16 2009, 17:41

ALTHOUGH AMD holds the top spot in the supercomputing world's top trumps, its much larger rival Intel is hoping the upcoming Nehalem-EX chip optimised for high performance computing (HPC) will help it take the crown.

In the interim, while the highest levels of the prestigious Top500 supercomputing list consist of a mixture of systems powered by AMD, Intel and IBM, Chipzilla is claiming a victory in numbers, with around four out of five supercomputers on the full list powered by its chips.

The company is hoping to extend this lead in the first half of next year with the launch of a six core Nehalem-EX processor which has been especially designed for HPC applications.

"With the industry's rapid adoption of the Intel Xeon processor 5500 series processor, Intel has more systems than ever on the Linpack benchmark-based Top500 list," said Richard Dracott, general manager of Intel's High Performance Computing Group.

"We're even more elated that customers are choosing our Xeon processor products not only for Linpack scores, but also because of the exceptional application performance delivered across a wide range of real-world workloads found in energy exploration, science research and 3D Internet."

This will effectively act as a successor to the recently released Nehalem-EP Xeon 5500 series processor. The Nehalem-EX will have greater memory bandwidth than the EP models and will scale up to 256 CPUs per system. Although packing in two fewer cores per chip, it will make up the difference by running the remainder at a higher frequency. µ


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