The school will receive a $1.5 million grant from Digital Equipment in the form of seven servers based on Alpha processors.
Digital will install the seven AlphaServer systems, which have four high-performance Alpha processors each, in MIT?s Laboratory for Computer Science. MIT says the system will offer supercomputer-like power and take its place as the most powerful computer system ever installed on the Cambridge campus.
Clustering is a means of gaining performance. By maintaining a high-speed connection between multiple servers, number-crunching tasks can be shared equally. The clustered computers will be capable of 26 Gflops (one gigaflop equals a thousand million "floating point" calculations per second) and have 12GB of shared memory.
MIT says the system will be used for research such as simulating ocean and atmospheric currents to understand changes in our climate.