Linux develops weather forecasting super-computer

"This is the supercomputing architecture of the future"

The world's first Linux-based weather forecasting super-computer has been developed by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) at the Forecast Systems Laboratory in Colorado.

Under the terms of a $15 million (£10m) deal, High Performance Technologies (HPT), will install a gigantic cluster of Compaq XP1000 Alpha workstations together running Linux at the Colorado labs. 277 computers will casually crunch 300 billion arithmetic calculations per second under the new architecture -- 20 times more powerful than the lab's previous super-computer.

Linux, not famed for high-end computing, has nonetheless won favour with scientist types at the NOAA and David Rhoades, director of High Performance Computing at HPT, believes Linux is the way ahead for this level of computing. "There are fads and there are trends; we believe Linux is a trend. We also believe this is the supercomputing architecture of the future," he is reported as saying.

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