NEC Launches World's Fastest Vector Supercomputer - SX Series Model 'SX-8'-



    TOKYO and NEW YORK, Oct. 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- NEC Corporation
 (Nasdaq:   NIPNY) today announced the worldwide launch and availability of the
 SX series model "SX-8," the world's most powerful vector supercomputer with a
 peak processing performance of 65TFLOPS (TFLOPS: one trillion floating point
 operations per second).
     Inheriting vector architecture, whose excellent sustained performance has
 been demonstrated by the Earth Simulator, the new product combines enhanced
 CPUs, and memory and I/O processing performance. A further-enhanced, single-
 chip, vector processor, realized by the SX-6, also contributes to the greatly
 improved price performance and space saving offered by the SX-8.
     The SX-8, with its dedicated CPUs, large-scale memory, and high data
 transfer rate between memory and CPUs, delivers much higher sustained
 performance than scalar supercomputers with a number of general-purpose CPUs.
 This is particularly effective in fields that require large-scale and ultra
 high-speed computing of massive data, such as meteorological forecasting,
 environmental simulations and automotive crash analysis.
 
     Features of the new product are described below.
 
     1. World's highest computing performance of 65TFLOPS
        The single-node model (includes up to 8 CPUs) achieves a peak vector
        performance of 128GFLOPS (GFLOPS: one billion floating point operations
        per second), while the multi-node model achieves the world's fastest
        peak vector performance of 65TFLOPS when configured with 512 nodes. In
        addition, a 262TB/s (36.8TB/s in SX-6) high peak data transfer rate
        between CPU(s) and memory is realized, and it also boasts an enlarged
        memory capacity of up to 64TB (16TB in SX-6).
 
     2. Further-enhanced single-chip, vector processor
        The vector processor (vector and scalar units) is integrated into a
        single chip by applying leading-edge CMOS technology with 90-nanometer
        (nanometer: 10-9 meter) copper interconnects and the most advanced LSI
        design technology. Pipelines of the vector unit, the central part of a
        vector processor, operate at a 2GHz clock frequency, which is double
        the speed of the SX-6, and realize a peak vector performance of
        16GFLOPS per CPU. Moreover, hardware support of the vector square root
        operation achieves a sustained performance six times higher than that
        of the SX-6.
 
     3. Excellent space-saving and power-saving
        The SX-8 achieves a reduction in space by 25% and power consumption by
        50% as compared with conventional models. This was achieved by applying
        high-density packaging technology in which processor(s) and memory are
        implemented on a single module.
 
     4. Software environment suitable for large-scale, multi-node system
        The basic software, "SUPER-UX," maintains upward compatibility with the
        existing SX series, and achieves further scalability expansion due to
        enhanced I/O processing and MPI. Global File System (GFS), a high-
        speed, file sharing system among multiple nodes on a system or among
        different systems, has also been enhanced. By utilizing GFS, users can
        access the shared files with a high performance close to that of a
        local disc, and can also take advantage of the high performance
        functions of GFS from third party platforms such as SUN and HP as they
        do with NFS (Network File System).
 
     The monthly rental price of the SX-8 starts from approximately 1,170,000
 yen, and shipment will commence in December 2004.
     NEC aims to achieve worldwide sales of more than 700 SX-8 units for the
 next three years.  In 1983, NEC entered the market of supercomputers with the
 launch of SX-2, whose performance exceeded 1GFLOPS for the first time ever, to
 meet the needs of ultra high-speed scientific computation. Since then, NEC has
 received over 700 orders across the SX series for their high sustained
 performance and excellent price performance.
     Supercomputers have been utilized for various fields including the
 development of advanced technology such as functional device materials with
 nanotechnology, large-scale scientific computing and simulation for energy
 development such as nuclear fusion, aeronautics and space development, and
 engineering such as automotive design and development of electronic products.
     Recently, while the scale of the problems to be solved becomes larger, a
 reduction in the development period is ever increasingly desired. Requirements
 for increase in speed of problem analysis, design, and optimization, have also
 become more demanding, leading to the need for faster supercomputers.
     To respond to these needs, NEC has developed the new vector supercomputer,
 which boasts greatly improved operating and price performance in comparison
 with scalar servers that are used for large-scale and large-capacity
 scientific computing.
 
      Reference
 
      Vector supercomputer:
     A supercomputer with high-speed processor(s) called "vector
 processor(s)"that is used for scientific/technical computation.  Vector
 supercomputers deliver high performance in complex, large-scale computation,
 such as fluid dynamics, through the processing of array-handling with a single
 vector instruction.
 
      Scalar parallel supercomputer:
     A supercomputer with multiple general purpose processors suitable for
 simultaneous processing of multiple workloads such as genomic analysis or
 easily paralleled computations like particle computation. They deliver high
 performance by connecting many processors (also used for business
 applications) in parallel.
 
      About NEC Corporation
     NEC Corporation (Nasdaq:   NIPNY) (FTSE: 6701q.l) is one of the world's
 leading providers of Internet, broadband network and enterprise business
 solutions dedicated to meeting the specialized needs of its diverse and global
 base of customers. Ranked as one of the world's top patent-producing
 companies, NEC delivers tailored solutions in the key fields of computer,
 networking and electron devices, by integrating its technical strengths in IT
 and
     Networks, and by providing advanced semiconductor solutions through NEC
 Electronics Corporation. The NEC Group employs more than 140,000 people
 worldwide and had net sales of 4,906 billion yen (approx. $47 billion) in the
 fiscal year ended March 2004. For additional information, please visit the NEC
 home page at: http://www.nec.com.
 
 

SOURCE NEC Corporation

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