Cray upgrading Army supercomputer

The Army has awarded Cray Inc. an $18.5 million contract to upgrade the

Army's High Performance Computing Research Center's Cray supercomputer.

This is the first major order for the company that was formed on March 31

when the Seattle-based Tera Computer Co. acquired Cray Research from Silicon

Graphic Inc.

"A multimillion-dollar order for supercomputers to support the Department

of Defense and the U.S. Army's science and technology base is a strong indicator

of customer confidence in the newly formed Cray Inc.," said Cray president

Jim Rottsolk

The upgraded system at AHPCRC will be one of the world's most powerful supercomputers.

The contract also includes an option for AHPCRC to acquire next-generation

Cray supercomputer technology.

The primary purpose of the computer — about the size of two standard-sized

refrigerators — is to increase the safety margins for paratroopers jumping

out of airplanes, said Cray spokesman Steve Conway.

The system also will be used to support basic research activities at AHPCRC

and its partner academic institutions. System delivery is expected by midyear.

Cray Inc. builds and sells high-performance vector processor and general-purpose

parallel computer systems.

Conway said the supercomputer would be "the world's most powerful computer

except for anything we don't know about in the classified field."

Cray has substantial business with federal agencies, including DOD, the

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA.

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