IBM uses water cooling to create energy efficient supercomputer


IBM has introduced a supercomputer equipped with a water cooling system that reduces energy consumption by 40 percent.

The Power 575 supercomputer uses water-chilled copper plates above new IBM Power6 microprocessors to remove heat. The setup requires 80 percent fewer air conditioning units and, due to the water-cooling system and latest processors, is three times more energy efficient per rack than supercomputers that use previous microprocessors.

The Power 575 is designed to handle intensive computing problems related to energy, engineering, aerospace and weather modelling. The National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo., plans to upgrade to the Power6 version of the supercomputer.

"Ever faster computers are vital to our research on hurricane formation and climate change" - Al Kellie of the Center said in a statement. "We're especially pleased to see that, with the new Power 575, IBM has been able to drastically increase performance while remaining very energy efficient."