[extropy-chat] Orion now shipping desktop supercomputer

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Tue May 3 10:03:53 UTC 2005


Called Orion DS-96 and touted as a personal supercomputer that fits
under a desk, the 96-node cluster workstation stands 27 inches high,
25 inches long and 17 inches wide and is stackable up to four systems.
There is no need for special cooling requirements. In fact, a computer
has a maximum power draw of just 1500 watts from a standard power
The computer is designed to run Linux and includes a dual 10-GigE
fiber card and a 12-port GigE switch for ultra high bandwidth and
massive data needs.
Orion execs claim the DS-96 can achieve 300 gigaflops (Gflops) peak
performance (150 Gflops sustained) with up to 192 gigabytes of memory
and up to 9.6 terabytes of storage.

Orion's machines are pre-installed with standard parallel programming
libraries and iNquiry software, a suite of more than 200 applications
for life science researchers. The workstations also include other
clustering components, such as Message Passing Interface and Parallel
Virtual Machine.
Orders from U.S. institutions such as NASA, San Diego State
University, the Henry H. Wheeler, Jr. Brain Imaging Center at U.C.
Berkeley, and the University of Nebraska have already filled their
orders and tested their systems.


The price tag of >100,000 USD limits these machines to large
institutions at present, but the price will come down.  (Of course,
the collapsing dollar makes this price cheaper in Europe, where Orion
are currently planning a sales drive).


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