ARSC Announces Installation of Cray X1


ARSC Announces Installation of Cray X1

The Arctic Region Supercomputing Center (ARSC) announces availability of one of the most powerful supercomputers in the world. The system, a Cray X1 called Klondike, is already showing results that demonstrate the system’s unique capability to tackle extremely large computational problems.

“This new system will ensure ARSC’s and the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ continued roles as significant contributors to science involving high performance computing,” said ARSC director Frank Williams. “I anticipate we’ll be seeing compelling results that couldn’t be obtained otherwise, from the researchers who use this tool.”

The system arrived at the center in May of this year and has been undergoing installation, testing and acceptance ever since. Beginning this week, the computer will be available to researchers at the University of Alaska and other federal and academic research centers. Already, scientists at the Naval Postgraduate School have begun perfecting arctic ice-ocean models in hopes of gaining new insights into warming in the arctic which may allow use of the northern sea routes connecting the Pacific Ocean and Europe.

“The speed of this new computer is allowing us to plan a project of a magnitude that we would not have attempted on other systems,” said Wieslaw Maslowski of NPS. “The speed-ups on the tests we’ve run suggest a performance of one hundred times better than what we were seeing on other Cray computers.”

The ARSC X1 is the sixth of its kind to be installed anywhere in the world. It is equipped with 128 nodes, each with four processors; 512 gigabytes of main memory and 21 terabytes of disk (a terabyte is about 1,000 gigabytes). Klondike is also equipped with a state-of-the-art cooling system that uses evaporation to keep the machine cool.

About ARSC

The Arctic Region Supercomputing Center, located on the campus of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, supports computational research in science and engineering with emphasis on high latitudes and the Arctic. The center provides high performance computational, visualization, networking and data storage resources for researchers within the University of Alaska, other academic institutions, the Department of Defense and other government agencies. ARSC is an Allocated Distributed Center in the Department of Defense's High Performance Computing Modernization Program. For additional information about ARSC, go to

CONTACT: Jenn Wagaman, ARSC Public Affairs Coordinator, (907) 450-8662, 03/004-1

Arctic Region Supercomputing Center PO Box 756020, Fairbanks, AK 99775 | voice: 907-450-8600 | email:

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