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Cosmos Consortium Selects SGI to Accelerate Research on the Origin of the Universe

Team Led by Professor Stephen Hawking Chooses SGI® Altix® UV for Sophisticated HPC Applications

FREMONT, Calif., and Reading, England August 11, 2010 SGI (NASDAQ: SGI), a global leader in HPC and data center solutions, today announced that the UK Computational Cosmology Consortium (COSMOS), based at the University of Cambridge, has selected SGI® Altix® UV 1000 to support its research. Altix UV will help cosmologists answer questions at the foundation of our understanding of how the universe came to be, of what it is made, how it has evolved and what the future holds.

"Recent progress towards a complete understanding of the universe has been impressive, but many puzzles remain," said Professor Stephen Hawking, principal investigator, COSMOS. "Cosmology is now a precise science, and we need supercomputers to calculate what our theories of the early universe predict and test them against observations of the present universe."

Altix UV meets COSMOS's requirements for high performance, scalable, big-memory supercomputing to facilitate vast amounts of data analysis. SGI is collaborating with COSMOS so that Altix UV, with its ease-of-use and rapid time-to-solution, begins contributing to research findings as quickly as possible. Collaboration efforts include: code porting to the Altix UV platform, applications knowledge transfers between SGI engineers and COSMOS users, parallel programmer support and end-user training. SGI engineers will also provide dedicated support to COSMOS researchers in strategic projects, following the Altix UV installation.

"The new Altix UV system gives us a strategic advantage as we seek to advance the confrontation between fundamental and observational cosmology, especially using Planck satellite data," said Professor Paul Shellard, director, COSMOS. "This flexible, scalable and cost-effective architecture will ensure that COSMOS maintains international leadership."

Supporting up to 16 terabytes of global shared memory in a single system image, Altix UV remains highly efficient at scale for applications ranging from in-memory databases to data and compute-intensive HPC applications. Altix UV is based on the latest Intel® Xeon® processors and enables scaling from 32 to 2,048 cores with architectural provisioning for up to 262,144 cores, allowing customers to expand shared memory capabilities without purchasing their entire infrastructure upfront.

"Altix UV architecture is ideally suited to the wide range of mixed workloads at COSMOS," said Rod Evans, vice president of SGI EMEA. "We are delighted to work with Professor Hawking and his team to provide the computational power, applications support and collaboration to advance their world-leading research."

"Advanced research centers in academia and industry need breakthrough performance and architectural innovation to achieve their goals, said Rajeeb Hazra, general manager of High Performance Computing at Intel. "With the Altix UV architecture, SGI effectively uses the scalability, memory capacity and efficiency of the Intel® Xeon® 7500 processor series to satisfy critical HPC application requirements and achieve real-world breakthroughs."

For more information about SGI Altix UV, please visit

Note to editors: High-resolution photos of Altix UV are available for download at

About SGI SGI is a global leader in large-scale clustered computing, high performance storage, HPC and data center enablement and services. SGI is focused on helping customers solve their most demanding business and technology challenges. Visit for more information.

The COSMOS consortium is a national collaboration of UK Universities brought together to advance the understanding of the origin and structure of the universe. The COSMOS consortium is a national collaboration between nearly 30 faculty members at 10 UK institutions, including the Universities of Cambridge, Central Lancashire, Portsmouth, Sussex, Manchester and Oxford as well as Imperial College and University College, London. The consortium is supported by the Science & Technology Facilities Council (STFC) UK, which provided the capital funding for this latest COSMOS facility.

For more information about COSMOS, visit

Contact Information:

Johnson King
Jonathan Mathias and Fiona Halkerston
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Schwartz Communications, Inc.
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