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Inside the National Computational Infrastructure: Gallery

Located in Canberra, the National Computational Infrastructure stores and manages access to more than 10 petabytes of national and international data sets, including from the Bureau of Meteorology, the World Climate Research Programme, and observation data from NASA.
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By Aimee Chanthadavong on
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1 of 7 Aimee Chanthadavong/ZDNet

The National Computational Infrastructure (NCI), housed at the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra, processes data-intensive computations, such as climate change, earth system science, and life sciences research.

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2 of 7 Aimee Chanthadavong/ZDNet

The facility is home to one of Australia's fastest supercomputers, Raijin, as well as file systems, research cloud, and data catalogues.

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3 of 7 Aimee Chanthadavong/ZDNet

Lindsay Botten, director of the NCI and an ANU professor, claimed that Raijin is the Southern Hemisphere's first petaflop supercomputer, which contains 160TB of main memory and more than 300 software packages.

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4 of 7 Aimee Chanthadavong/ZDNet

The NCI recently signed a AU$2 million deal with NetApp to install a range of flash storage arrays. This delivered the NCI with an additional 11 petabytes of raw storage capacity.

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5 of 7 Aimee Chanthadavong/ZDNet

The NCI uses an evaporative cooling unit to keep the facility cool. The unit evaporates the hot air out from the facility, before recycling it into cool air.

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6 of 7 Aimee Chanthadavong/ZDNet

As part of the cooling system, the NCI has water tanks that can hold 10 minutes' worth of cool water that drains at 75 litres per second, which is equivalent to filling a 50,000-litre swimming pool in 10 minutes.

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7 of 7 (Image: Aimee Chanthadavong/ZDNet)

In case of a power failure, the facility has two generators: One for the supercomputer, and the other for the rest of the facility. The generators can go from idle to producing maximum output within 26 seconds of a power failure.

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