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THE WA Interactive Virtual Environments Centre (iVEC) has announced that American company Silicon Graphics Inc will provide it with an Altix supercomputer. The system, jointly funded by iVEC and CSIRO High Performance Scientific Computing, will be in addition to the American-made Cray XT3 supercomputer worth $2.4 million already being installed at the University of WA. The SGI system is expected to deliver at least a 20-fold increase in performance over the current iVEC system and will be installed at the Australian Resources Research Centre at Technology Park. iVEC director Andrew Rohl said the Altix purchased was a shared-memory system with a single pool of 320 GB of memory. “Within Australia this is amongst the largest pools of memory installed in a single system,” he said. “It will ensure that all iVEC and WA CSIRO users will be able to solve some of the world’s toughest problems. SGI is also a leader in high performance computing and entering into a cooperative relationship with SGI will enable us to leverage its expertise.”

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