According to a UNM release, a new computing system being donated to UNM’s Center for Advanced Research Computing by Los Alamos National Laboratory will add to the supercomputing being done at UNM.

The system is nine times more powerful than the combined computing power of the four machines it is replacing.

The release states that the machine was acquired from LANL through the National Science Foundation-sponsored PR0bE project, which is run by the New Mexico Consortium. The NMC — comprised of UNM, New Mexico State, and New Mexico Tech — engages institutions and industry in scientific research in the nation's interest and to increase the role of LANL in science, education and economic development.

The system includes:

  • More than 500 nodes, each featuring two quad-core 2.66 GHz Intel Xeon 5550 CPUs and 24 GB of memory
  • More than 4,000 cores and 12 terabytes of RAM
  • 45-50 trillion floating-point operations per second (45-50 teraflops)

Additional memory, storage and specialized compute facilities to augment this system are also being planned, according to the release.

“This is roughly 20 percent more powerful than any other remaining system at UNM,” CARC interim Director Patrick Bridges is quoted as saying in the release. “Not only will the new machine be easier to administer and maintain, but also easier for students, faculty and staff to use. The machine will provide cutting-edge computation for users and will be the fastest of all the machines.”

New Mexico Consortium Chief Information Officer Andree Jacobson is pleased the donation will benefit educational efforts, according to the release.

“Through a very successful collaboration between the National Science Foundation, New Mexico Consortium, and the Los Alamos National Laboratory called PRObE, we’ve been able to repurpose this retired machine to significantly improve the research computing environment in New Mexico,” Jacobson was quoted as saying in the release. “It is truly wonderful to see old computers get a new life, and also an outstanding opportunity to assist the New Mexico universities.”

To make space for the new machine, the Metropolis, Pequeña and Ulam systems at UNM will be phased out over the next couple of months, according to the release. As they are taken offline, the new machine will be installed and brought online.

Users of existing systems and their research will be transitioned to the new machine as part of this process.

Matthew Reisen is the news editor at the Daily Lobo. He can be reached at or on Twitter @MReisen88.