Ultrascale Computing Could Save Industry Years, Billions - InformationWeek

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Ultrascale Computing Could Save Industry Years, Billions

General Electric Co. spends years and millions of dollars using computers to prototype and simulate jet engines. Likewise, General Motors Corp. can't meet the demand for safer, more fuel-efficient, and cleaner cars without substantial increases in computing capabilities, increases that can't be achieved through existing computer technology.

Spencer Abraham -- Photo by Reuters

Photo of Spencer Abraham by Reuters
Last week, the U.S. Energy Department issued a 20-year map for scientific exploration that includes "ultrascale scientific computing," which would reduce from years to days the time needed to simulate complex systems.

The ultrascale scientific computing system, to be located at multiple sites, will increase by a factor of 100 the computing capability available to support open--as opposed to classified--scientific research in the United States. It'll build on accomplishments of Japan's Earth Simulator supercomputer, which has a peak speed of 40 teraflops, three times faster than the theoretical peak performance of U.S. processors.

The impact on the economy could be significant, on the order of billions of dollars, Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham says. "There is no real way to measure the competitive advantage this kind of computing power can give us."

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