Int. J. Parallel Program

The blue gene/L supercomputer: A hardware and software story

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The Blue Gene/L system at the Department of Energy Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, California is the world's most powerful supercomputer. It has achieved groundbreaking performance in both standard benchmarks as well as real scientific applications. In that process, it has enabled new science that simply could not be done before. Blue Gene/L was developed by a relatively small team of dedicated scientists and engineers. This article is both a description of the Blue Gene/L supercomputer as well as an account of how that system was designed, developed, and delivered. It reports on the technical characteristics of the system that made it possible to build such a powerful supercomputer. It also reports on how teams across the world worked around the clock to accomplish this milestone of high-performance computing. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007.