SGI Onyx Systems Provide Visualization Power for Japan's Earth Simulator

World's Most Powerful Computing System Relies on SGI Graphics Supercomputer for Real-Time Visualization of Global Environment

HUNTSVILLE, Ala., Feb. 19, 2004 - MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., March 1, 2004 -- Silicon Graphics (NYSE: SGI) today announced that an SGI(R) visualization solution consisting of Onyx(R) graphics supercomputers and an SGI(R) Reality Center(R) facility has added real-time visualization capabilities to Japan's Earth Simulator, recognized as the world's most powerful computer. The visualization solution enables researchers to view and more effectively analyze simulations generated by the 5,120-processor vector supercomputer, which is operated in the Earth Simulator Center of the Japan Marine Science and Technology Center (JAMSTEC) in Kanazawa-ku, Yokohama-shi.

"The world is evolving not in an isolated way but in a complex way where every elementary process interacts with each other," said Tetsuya Satoh, director-general of the Earth Simulator Center. "By installing a high-end visualization system, our researchers now can intuitively grasp the various, intricately related phenomena that combine to create our global climate. This technology will greatly enhance our collaboration and discovery capabilities."

The SGI visualization solution allows researchers to visualize the terabytes of data generated as the Earth Simulator computes various high-resolution meteorological and scientific models. Without the power of visualization, analysis of the computer-generated data would be extremely difficult if not impossible. Instead, JAMSTEC decided on SGI for a solution that enables their scientists to turn the massive amounts of data into knowledge.

The Earth Simulator has been driving Japan's development of high-speed parallel computer systems to:

    --  Study global warming phenomena
    --  Study and predict global-scale meteorological changes
    --  Understand mechanisms of earthquakes
    --  Study mechanisms of earth core and earth layer changes

"Bringing the power of visualization to help solve the world's most challenging and important problems is what SGI is all about," said Bob Bishop, Chairman and CEO, SGI. "Our technologies enable scientists to see their data in ways that unlock the secrets of the planet. SGI enables scientists and engineers to transform their data into knowledge and understanding."

JAMSTEC's visualization solution consists of two graphics supercomputers and a four-sided immersive room called the BRAVE. The first graphics supercomputer installed is an eight-processor, SGI(R) Onyx(R) 3000 InfiniteReality4(TM) dual-pipe system with 16GB of memory. The most recent addition to the center is a four-processor, Silicon Graphics(R) Onyx4(TM) UltimateVision(TM) four-pipe system with 16GB of memory that runs side by side with the Onyx 3000. Both Onyx systems capture simulation data via the Earth Simulator Center's infrastructure network and create visualization data for real-time projection on the BRAVE system. The projection creates an immersive surrounding visualization space with the front, left and right, and floor images displayed on a hemispheric screen projection system developed and installed by Nissho Electronics.

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SGI, also known as Silicon Graphics, Inc., is the world's leader in high-performance computing, visualization and storage. SGI's vision is to provide technology that enables the most significant scientific and creative breakthroughs of the 21st century. Whether it's sharing images to aid in brain surgery, finding oil more efficiently, studying global climate or enabling the transition from analog to digital broadcasting, SGI is dedicated to addressing the next class of challenges for scientific, engineering and creative users. With offices worldwide, the company is headquartered in Mountain View, Calif., and can be found on the Web at

NOTE: Silicon Graphics, SGI, Onyx, Reality Center, InfiniteReality, the SGI cube, and the SGI logo are registered trademarks and InfiniteReality4, Onyx4, UltimateVision and The Source of Innovation and Discovery are trademarks of Silicon Graphics, Inc., in the United States and/or other countries worldwide. All other trademarks mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.

Lisa Pistacchio of SGI, +1-650-933-5683, or

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