San Diego, November 5, 2004 -- Researchers at the University of California, San Diego will use advanced communications equipment contributed by Fujitsu Laboratories of America to link two experimental optical networks. The Sunnyvale, CA-based company is the U.S.-based research arm of Fujitsu Limited, a leading provider of customer-focused information technology and communications solutions for the global marketplace.
“Fujitsu has a keen interest in the development of tomorrow’s information processing and networking technologies,” said Akira Hattori, Senior Vice President at Fujitsu Laboratories of America, Inc. “We are impressed with the range of research projects that will benefit from using our XG800 switch.”
The Fujitsu switch will be used by researchers associated with several networking projects on campus, including two already funded by the National Science Foundation: FWGrid, a $1.8 million grant to outfit UCSD’s new Computer Science and Engineering building with an experimental Fast Wired and Wireless Grid to explore large compute (teraflops) and data (tens of terabytes) capabilities of state-of-the-art technologies; and the $13.5 million OptIPuter, which is designing a revolutionary new architecture for distributed cyberinfrastructure to support data-intensive scientific research and collaboration.
“Both of these projects will benefit from the ultra high bandwidth that the Fujitsu switch provides,” said Larry Smarr, director of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology [Cal-(IT)²] and principal investigator on the OptIPuter project. “The equipment will link FWGrid to other OptIPuter locations, and move us quickly into the fast-growing, 10Gb switched lambdas fieldhelping researchers to explore massive amounts of scientific and biomedical data interactively.” Lambdas are individual wavelengths of light that can transmit data through optical fiber, according to Smarr, who holds the Harry E. Gruber Chair in Computer Science and Information Technologies in the Jacobs School.
The Fujitsu XG800 switch bridges the FWGrid and OptIPuter resources in the CSE building. FWGrid’s 192 processors deployed in 96 HP ProLiant DL145 systems will connect to several OptIPuter clusters in the same building with a total of 42 compute nodes. The XG800 will transmit data via one or several 10Gb links to the rest of the OptIPuter network at UCSD, including one storage cluster with 48 nodes, six visualization clusters with 49 nodes, and five compute clusters with 313 nodes.
A typical data object distributed within this infrastructure – e.g., detailed imaging of Earth topography, or brain scans – can easily scale up to gigabytes of size. To interact with that data in real time requires high-speed, predictable ‘clear channel’ networks. A recent test of the Fujitsu switch involving 10 pairs of simultaneously 1 Gigabit per second (Gbps) communication demonstrated that the switch is sustaining 9.4Gbps simplex (one direction at a time) on two ports.
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