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Supercomputers Boost Grid Computing

The use of grid computing is growing, driven by U.S. research organizations spiraling requirements for more processing power and storage

The Ohio Supercomputing Center (OSC) and the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) today placed orders for some seriously heavy-duty kit from Cray Inc. (Nasdaq: CRAY) and Silicon Graphics Inc. (SGI) (NYSE: SGI).

The latest research figures from Evans Data Corp. say that grid computing use has grown 75 percent over the last six months, prompted by the research sector.

Research organizations' need for improved server and mainframe performance, which is measured in millions of instructions per second (MIPS), is growing at an alarming rate, according to Evans Data analyst Joe McKendrick. “Their need for storage and processing is expanding quite rapidly,” he says. "At least three out of four organizations double their MIPS requirement every year."

But McKendrick believes the commercial sector is now catching on to grid computing, which involves harnessing the computing power and storage of distributed systems. Evans Data’s research found that 37 percent of database developers are either implementing or planning to implement a grid architecture for their firms.

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