iVEC seeks input on petascale Pawsey site

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iVEC seeks input on petascale Pawsey site
Artist's impression of the Pawsey Centre. Credit: iVEC

CSIRO to deploy $65m supercomputing 'beast'.

iVEC has rebranded its first two Pawsey supercomputing facilities in preparation for the $65 million Pawsey Centre, expected to launch in 2013.

The supercomputing group's partner CSIRO yesterday issued tender documents seeking researchers and industry representatives to attend “intensive, weekly” meetings about the petascale facility.

iVEC spokesman David Satterthwaite said the Pawsey Centre, previously referred to as ‘Stage 2’, would be a “very different beast” from Epic@Murdoch (Stage 1A) and Fornax@UWA (Stage 1B).

The Pawsey Centre Project had a total of $80 million in funding from the Government’s Super Science initiative, and was intended to support the Australian SKA Pathfinder radio telescope.

Epic@Murdoch was a $5 million, 87.2 TeraFLOP commodity Linux cluster that was ranked 87th on the Top500 supercomputer list last November.

Fornax@UWA was to be a GPU cluster operating at a similar speed. Satterthwaite said the tender process was still underway, and installation would likely begin by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, the $65 million Pawsey Centre was intended to operate at petascale, and would be located at the CSIRO’s Australian Resources Research Centre in Kensington, Western Australia.

Since the facilities were architecturally different, Satterthwaite expected experiments to be allocated to each on a “case-by-case” basis.

iVEC sought to discuss petascale and real-time supercomputing, high-performance storage, hierarchical storage management, tape storage, interoperability and facilities at meetings about the Pawsey Centre from June.

Satterthwaite said "ground should be broken" on the Kensington facility by the end of the year.

Edited on 20 May: This story initially stated that Fornax@UWA would cost $10 million. iVEC has since clarified that it will spend $4 million on Fornax and a petabyte data storage upgrade. $6 million will be spent on other Pawsey project expenses.

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