Sun to Unveil World’s First Open Petascale Architecture

I’m writing to you from the International Supercomputing Conference in Dresden, Germany. Today, Sun founder Andy Bechtolsheim will unveil the Sun(tm) Constellation System, the World’s First Open Petascale Architecture.
What is it?
The Sun(tm) Constellation System is an open systems Petascale computing environment packaging ultra-dense high performance computing, networking, storage and software into an integrated system that delivers massive scalability, dramatically reduced complexity and breakthrough economics to the HPC market.
What does this mean to Sun in High Performance Computing?
Sun can now offer a complete solution to customers who want to build the world’s largest compute clusters. We can compete and win the biggest deals on the planet.
As reported on Marc Hamilton’s blog, the first customer installation of the Sun Constellation System is the TACC Ranger cluster. With over 500 TeraFLOPS of CPU power, this cluster will be one of the most powerful general-purpose computing platforms in the world when fully deployed in late 2007.
What’s our secret sauce here?
* Ultra-dense IB Switch: The bigger a compute cluster, the more important the interconnect is to efficiency and performance. Until now, the largest InfinBand switch available has had 432 ports. With 3456 ports, the Sun ultra-dense switch helps reduce cost and overcomes the complexity typically associated with large-scale HPC clusters. This single, fully non-blocking monolithic core InfiniBand switch replaces hundreds of discrete switching elements, helping to reduce the number of required leaf switches and vastly simplifying cabling and administration time by up to 80 percent.
* Ultra-dense Blade server platform: With up to 48 blades in a single rack, the Sun Constellation System has incredible compute density with built-in IB connectivity. We’re talking 6 TeraFLOPS per rack.
What is Sun previewing in Dresden at the ISC conference?
Andy Bechtolsheim will unveil the Sun Constellation System in the ISC Sun Booth at 6:00 pm CET on June 26. The ultra-dense Switch and Blade Server chassis will be in the booth for customers to see for the first time anywhere. As this is a technology preview, the Systems are static and will not be powered up.
When will this be available for new customers?
The Sun Constellation System is expected to start shipping towards the end of 2007.
For more information including a datasheet and FAQ, please check out the Sun HPC site
I’ll be posting photos and video from the show floor very soon.
-Rich Brueckner
editor, Sun HPC Watercooler

About Rich
FlexRex began his life as a cartoon character I created a Sun Microsystems. As the world's first "fictional blogger," he appeared in numerous parody films that made fun of the whole work-from-home thing. Somewhere along the line, the Sun IT department adopted FlexRex as their spokesman in a half-dozen security awareness films for employees. So when I left Sun recently, I started FlexRex Communications, a Marketing company in Portland, Oregon.

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