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IBM Cloud Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Zakia Bouachraoui, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan

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Obama Honors IBM's Blue Gene Supercomputer with National Medal

Blue Gene has led to breakthroughs in science, energy efficiency and analytics

President Obama recognized IBM and its Blue Gene family of supercomputers with the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, the country's most prestigious award given to leading innovators for technological achievement.

President Obama will personally bestow the award at a special White House ceremony on October 7. IBM, which earned the National Medal of Technology and Innovation on seven other occasions, is the only company recognized with the award this year.

Blue Gene's speed and expandability have enabled business and science to address a wide range of complex problems and make more informed decisions -- not just in the life sciences, but also in astronomy, climate, simulations, modeling and many other areas. Blue Gene systems have helped map the human genome, investigated medical therapies, safeguarded nuclear arsenals, simulated radioactive decay, replicated brain power, flown airplanes, pinpointed tumors, predicted climate trends, and identified fossil fuels -- all without the time and money that would have been required to physically complete these tasks.

The system also reflects breakthroughs in energy efficiency. With the creation of Blue Gene, IBM dramatically shrank the physical size and energy needs of a computing system whose processing speed would have required a dedicated power plant capable of generating power to thousands of homes.

The influence of the Blue Gene supercomputer's energy-efficient design and computing model can be seen today across the Information Technology industry. Today, 18 of the top 20 most energy efficient supercomputers in the world are built on IBM high performance computing technology, according to the latest Supercomputing 'Green500 List' announced by Green500.org in July, 2009.

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