"The Cascade supercomputer will be the result of the most ambitious R&D programme Cray has ever embarked on, and our next-generation system is now made even more compelling with today's exciting announcement that the Cascade system will be available with the Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors", stated Peg Williams, Cray's senior vice president of high performance computing systems. "Intel's MIC architecture features a strong balance of performance, programmability and power efficiency, and combining the Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors with the innovative supercomputing technologies we are incorporating into Cascade, will allow us to provide our HPC customers with a supercomputer that is unmatched for balance, scalability, reliability and price/performance on real-world applications."
Cray's next-generation Cascade supercomputer, which is expected to be available in the first half of 2013, is the next step in Cray's Adaptive Supercomputing vision. The system will feature a continuing evolution of the Cray Linux Environment, Cray's HPC-optimized programming environment, and the next-generation system interconnect, codenamed "Aries". Cascade will be able to handle a wide variety of processor types, including Intel Xeon processors E5-2600 product family - a first for Cray's high-end systems - and now the Intel Xeon Phi coprocessor, further extending the flexibility of Cray supercomputers.
"The Intel Xeon Phi coprocessor is optimized to deliver the highest levels of parallel performance, and the combination of Cray's next-generation Cascade supercomputer paired with Intel processors and coprocessors will provide a powerful resource for HPC users", stated Raj Harza, Intel VP and general manager of Technical Computing Group. "Cray's Cascade system will feature highly innovative HPC technologies, and we are excited that our collaboration with Cray will enable researchers and scientists to achieve breakthrough innovations and discoveries."
A number of leading HPC centres have already signed contracts with Cray to purchase Cascade systems. In October 2010, Cray announced it had signed a contract with the University of Stuttgart to provide a Cascade system to the High Performance Computing Center Stuttgart (HLRS) in Germany. In December 2011, Cray announced it was awarded a contract to provide a Cascade supercomputer to the Academic Center for Computing and Media Studies (ACCMS) at Kyoto University in Kyoto, Japan.
The Cascade supercomputer is made possible in part by Cray's participation in the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency's (DARPA) High Productivity Computing Systems programme.