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Jaguar to be upgraded at Oak Ridge National Laboratory

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Oak Ridge National Laboratory is to upgrade its Cray XT5 Jaguar supercomputer. The upgrade to six-core AMD Opteron processors, code-named Istanbul, will increase Jaguar's peak performance to more than two petaflops.

The contract to upgrade the Jaguar system will increase the number of the Cray XT5 supercomputer’s processing cores to more than 224,000. The upgrade is expected to be installed and accepted by the end of 2009.

'What makes this upgrade to Jaguar truly exciting for us is the realisation that the scientists and engineers using Jaguar will now have a faster and more powerful tool on their hands for achieving important scientific breakthroughs,' said Peter Ungaro, president and CEO of Cray. 'The Cray XT5 system at Oak Ridge remains the first and only supercomputer in the world to run real-world, scientific applications at more than a sustained petaflop, and we are very proud of this groundbreaking achievement. When the upgrade is complete, this performance level will increase and the scientific community will benefit – that is what matters most to us.'

At the end of 2008, Jaguar was upgraded to a peak performance of 1.64 petaflops and set a historic milestone in surpassing the sustained petaflop speed barrier on two scientific applications. Sustained performance is a critical measure in supercomputing and allows scientists and engineers to dramatically increase the size, realism and complexity of simulations used to address fundamental scientific problems. For example, climate scientists are using Jaguar to create climate models of unprecedented resolution and fidelity, giving us a better understanding of future climate and our impact on that climate.