EYP to Design NCSA Petascale Center

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EYP Mission Critical Facilities (EYP MCF) will be the lead design firm for the National Center for Supercomputing Applications’ (NCSA) new petascale computing building at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, the company said today. The new facility will be home to the world’s most powerful supercomputer, a “petascale” system expected to make arithmetic calculations at a sustained rate in excess of 1,000-trillion operations per second (a “petaflop” per second).

The supercomputer, known as Blue Waters, will be housed in a 95,000 square foot facility at UIUC budgeted at $72.5 million, or about $690 a square foot. The project was commissioned last August by the National Science Foundation, which said the system would “provide U.S. scientists and engineers access to unprecedented petascale computing resources that will allow them to ask and answer complex questions we haven’t even dreamed of.”

The NCSA project is the latest in a series of high-performance computing (HPC) and research data centers designed by EYP MCF. In 2007, EYP MCF designed facilities at Argonne National Laboratory, Indiana University and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

  • EYP MCF was part of the design-build team for Argonne Leadership Computing Facility, which houses a supercomputing system that can perform 445 trillion calculations per second.
  • EYP MCF provided programming and design services for Indiana University’s new 82,700 square foot data center building, which broke ground on October 12 and will house IU’s supercomputer along with its academic and administrative technology infrastructure.
  • EYP MCF also was the lead design firm for the Computational Center for Nanotechnology Innovations (CCNI) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), which opened in September. This facility is home to an HPC system ranked No. 7 in the June 2007 listing of the Top 500 most powerful supercomputers worldwide.

EYP MCF and NCSA are hosting a workshop titled Building the Data Center of the Future: Effective Energy-Efficient Design, to be held on February 13 at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The workshop will bring together experts from research centers, the IT industry, and consulting firms to explore the challenges involved in planning and designing energy-efficient supercomputing facilities.

EYP Mission Critical Facilities announced in November that it was being acquired by HP. EYP MCF is headquartered in New York and has approximately 350 employees with 13 offices in the United States and the U.K. The company has designed hundreds of technology-intensive mission critical facilities.

About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor-in-chief of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.