Darkstrand and National Center for Supercomputing Applications Join Forces to Speed Corporate Innovation
National Supercomputing Center Brings Advanced Resources to Darkstrand Network to Solve Real World Corporate Problems
CHICAGO– August 06, 2009 – Today, Darkstrand, a pioneer in corporate high-speed connectivity bridging research and commercialization, announced a collaborative alliance with the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a leader in deploying robust high-performance computing (HPC) resources and developing new computing and software technologies. This joint effort will enable major corporations working with NCSA to shorten the path from discovery to product development through advanced connectivity on the Darkstrand Network and the HPC power and expertise of NCSA. A third of FORTUNE 50 companies, including Boeing, Caterpillar, Dell, John Deere, IBM, Microsoft, Proctor & Gamble, Rolls-Royce and State Farm, have partnered with NCSA’s Private Sector Program (PSP) to leverage NCSA’s infrastructure, technologies and expertise. Through NCSA’s PSP and the Darkstrand Network, companies can optimize their combined innovation resources to solve real world problems.
“NCSA aligns with industry leaders to tackle the HPC and IT challenges that impede fast product development. For more than two decades, NCSA has worked with global corporations to solve intractable problems in HPC, data management and analysis, visualization, cybersecurity and advanced IT. We believe that forward-thinking companies can benefit from our partnership with Darkstrand to lead the coming innovation revolution,” said Merle Giles, director of the NCSA Private Sector Program.
In addition to its PSP, NCSA has partnered with IBM, the Great Lakes Consortium for Petascale Computation, and the National Science Foundation to develop Blue Waters, a sustained-petaflop supercomputer expected to be the most powerful supercomputer in the world for open scientific research when it comes online in 2011. Blue Waters will provide the national research community with unprecedented power and performance capability for breakthroughs in nearly all fields of science: the behavior of complex biological systems, hurricanes and tornadoes; an understanding of how the cosmos evolved after the Big Bang; the design of new materials at the atomic level; and simulation of complex engineered systems for power distribution, airplanes and automobiles. An integral component to the Blue Waters project is also an expanded program to introduce corporations to the benefits of petascale computing.
“Darkstrand is in the business of enabling companies to accomplish things they have been unable to do before,” said Michael Stein, CEO, Darkstrand. “We ask corporations, ‘What would you do if bandwidth was never a constraint?’ in order to liberate their ideas. Partnering with leaders such as NCSA’s PSP, which understands the need to close the gap between high-end research and corporate America, is a critical advantage for our customers. Through the PSP, corporations have the HPC technologies and deep expertise they need to innovate, prototype and quickly introduce new products into the marketplace.”
NCSA computational resources currently include two Dell Intel Clusters, an SGI Altix and an IBM IA-64 LinuxCluster. NCSA users have access to a permanent archival storage system and high-speed parallel file systems on each HPC platform that support the creation and analysis of large data sets. A wide variety of third-party applications software, community codes and performance tools are also available for HPC system users across diverse sciences: chemistry, computational biology, computational structural mechanics, computational fluid dynamics, and mathematics. NCSA and the PSP also provide user support and consulting services to integrate facilities and resources into one, integrated solution set for corporate users.
U.S. corporations connecting to Darkstrand will now gain access to NCSA’s vast research and technological capabilities along with those of other Darkstrand Network partners, including: Calit2 at the University of California, San Diego; the New Mexico Computing Applications Center; the Ohio Supercomputer Center; the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center; and the Electronic Visualization Laboratory at the University of Illinois, Chicago.
Darkstrand, Inc. leverages enterprise-level network bandwidth to close the collaboration gap between corporations and research communities. Darkstrand has the only private 40 Gigabyte per second national network infrastructure with direct access to leading high performance computing (HPC) and research solutions that allow companies to transform their business through innovation and advanced collaboration. The Darkstrand Network on the National LambdaRail backbone, is a 12,000-mile, continuous optical network that connects 28 US cities and 187 leading labs and universities such as UCSD CaliT2, Argonne Lab, Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center, Ohio Supercomputer Center and Electronic Visualization Laboratory at the University of Illinois, Chicago. Darkstrand is the next generation in HPC solutions, hyper-speed network connectivity (10-100Gbps and beyond), network and data security, public/private platform connectivity, and meta IP exchange for the media, manufacturing, bioscience, financial services and advanced communications industries. Based in Chicago, Illinois, Darkstrand was established in 2005. For more information, visit https://darkstrand.com.
About National Center for Supercomputing Applications
The National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), located at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, provides powerful computers and expert support that help thousands of scientists and engineers across the country better understand our world. With the computing power available at NCSA, researchers simulate how galaxies collide and merge, how proteins fold and how molecules move through the wall of a cell, how tornadoes and hurricanes form, and other complex natural and engineered phenomena. NCSA—established in 1986 as one of the original sites of the National Science Foundation’s Supercomputer Centers Program—is supported by the state of Illinois, the University of Illinois, the National Science Foundation, and grants from other federal agencies. For more information, visit http://www.ncsa.illinois.edu/.