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HP to Provide U.S. Department of Energy Laboratory One of World's Fastest Supercomputers

Agreement Results in World's Most Powerful Linux-based Supercomputer
PALO ALTO, Calif., and RICHLAND, Wash., April 16, 2002

Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HWP) and the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) today announced that PNNL has ordered a $24.5 million HP supercomputer that will allow researchers to apply computational science to address key scientific challenges. Once fully operational, the supercomputer should be one of the fastest in the world and the world's most powerful Linux-based supercomputer.

Consisting of 1,400 of the next generation of Intel® Itanium™ Family Processors (code-named McKinley and Madison), the new HP supercomputer would have an expected total peak performance of more than 8.3 teraflops -- roughly 8,300 times faster than a current personal computer. Calculations that currently take a month to complete could be done in one day on the new system.

"I'm pleased that the U.S. Department of Energy will now have the world's most powerful Linux-based computer for our pivotal work in biological and environmental research," said Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham. "This new computing power will advance scientific study in a host of areas and keep DOE and our national laboratories on the cutting edge of technology. But more than that, it will allow us to better fulfill our mission to the American people to provide the science needed to solve critical energy and national security problems." Scheduled to be fully operational in 2003, the supercomputer is expected to be more than 30 times faster, have 50 times more disk space and have 10 times more memory than PNNL's current computer, which was one of the world's most powerful when installed in 1997.

"Today's announcement shows how HP has worked to help accelerate the shift from proprietary platforms to open architectures, which provide increased scalability, speed and functionality at a lower cost," said Rich DeMillo, vice president and chief technology officer, HP. "This supercomputer is another validation of HP's service-centric technology vision, exemplifies the power and benefits inherent in the Itanium architecture and Linux, and clearly illustrates that there is more than one top player in the supercomputing market."

The HP supercomputer is slated to be installed at the Molecular Sciences Computing Facility within the William R. Wiley Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL), a DOE scientific user facility at PNNL. DOE's Office of Science sponsors EMSL through the Biological and Environmental Research program.

Scientists will be granted access to the supercomputer based on a competitive proposal process and will use it to study complex chemical problems that form the basis for new discoveries in areas such as life sciences, subsurface transport, material design, atmospheric chemistry and combustion. In addition, they will apply the supercomputer to study geochemistry and biochemistry; radioactive and chemical waste detection, storage and management; systems biology; genomics; proteomics; materials science; fundamental studies in chemistry and computer science; and catalysis.

"As we try to use computational results to replace difficult and expensive experiments, increased computational power is essential," said Dave Dixon, associate director of theory, modeling and simulation, EMSL. "The advanced architecture of the HP supercomputer provides that power, which will permit us to attain close to peak performance on our key computational chemistry problems."

Delivery of the supercomputer is scheduled to begin with the arrival of HP McKinley-based nodes in mid-2002 and conclude in 2003 with a final shipment of HP Madison-based systems.

The supercomputer is based upon an interconnect that provides a significantly reduced communication lag time between processors and offers highly sustained performance -- two factors crucial to computational chemistry research being done by PNNL. The supercomputer will have 1.8 terabytes of memory and 170 terabytes of disk space. (One terabyte is equal to 1,024 gigabytes.)

About Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is a DOE research facility and delivers breakthrough science and technology in the areas of environment, energy, health, fundamental sciences and national security. Battelle, based in Columbus, Ohio, has operated the laboratory for DOE since 1965. Business inquiries on PNNL research and technologies should be directed to +1 888 375 PNNL or email inquiry@pnl.gov.

More information on EMSL is available at http://www.emsl.pnl.gov. The Molecular Sciences Computing Facility is at http://www.emsl.pnl.gov:2080/capabs/mscf/index.html.

About HP

Hewlett-Packard Company -- a leading global provider of computing and imaging solutions and services -- is focused on making technology and its benefits accessible to all. HP had total revenue of $45.2 billion in its 2001 fiscal year. Information about HP and its products can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.hp.com.


Intel and Itanium are U.S. registered trademarks of Intel Corp.


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