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LRZ Supercomputer Backs Up Big Data with IBM Tape System

Leibniz Supercomputing Centre's famed SuperMUC supercomputer gets innovative storage infrastructure to back up and archive up to 16.5 petabytes of scientific data

ARMONK, N.Y. and GARCHING and STUTTGART-EHNINGEN, Germany, Dec. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced today that the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) has implemented an innovative IBM tape storage system to provide up to 16.5 petabytes of scientific data archiving and backup for the center's SuperMUC supercomputer. A petabyte is roughly the equivalent of all the content in the U.S. Library of Congress – times 100.

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Designed by IBM in 2010 for the LRZ of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences, the SuperMUC combines 155,000 general purpose core processors with 320 terabytes of main memory to help scientists from across Europe study all fields of science, from the simulation of the evolution of the universe under the influence of dark matter, to the propagation of earthquakes, and much more. Unique to the design, is the SuperMUC's innovative "High Temperature Liquid Cooling" system that uses hot water to cool the system processors rather than compressed air and fans. As a result, the multicore computer consumes 40 percent less energy than the LRZ's previous supercomputers, dramatically reducing the organization's energy costs.      .

In addition to the innovative processing and cooling, the SuperMUC features 12 petabytes of permanent disk storage. To provide archiving and backup storage for the center's primary and secondary scientific data, IBM teamed with Business Partner SVA System Vertrieb Alexander GmbH, to create a high-capacity, highly-scalable storage system that consists of computers, disk systems and two massive tape libraries in a storage area network.

"What we needed was a system that could store the data streams of one of the fastest computers in Europe, using standard components to keep costs low," said Werner Baur, director of the Storage Group at LRZ. "It had to be scalable so that it is able to keep up with the development stages of the SuperMUC and it had to be able to integrate with our IT environment. That's exactly what we've got."

High-performance solution with flexible components

The intelligent archiving solution consists of two highly scalable IBM System Storage TS3500 Tape Library systems equipped with 22 LTO 5 drives and 11,000 tape cartridges. All told, the solution has a storage capacity of 16.5 petabytes and is scalable to 40 petabytes.

An IBM System x3850 acts as the archive server and is responsible for the management of metadata, the control of the mass storage device, and the control of the data flow. To ensure fast access to archived data, IBM System Storage DS3500 and IBM Storwize V7000 systems are used as high capacity disks, along with 6 terabytes of solid state drive (SSD) memory.

"The project at LRZ achieves the tremendous possibilities of IBM Storage technology for a challenging IT environment," said IBM Storage Manager, Michael Achtelik. "Through its expandability, the system also provides a long-term solution."

About the LRZ

The LRZ is a joint data center of the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich, the Technical University of Munich and the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and is one of the biggest supercomputing centers in Europe. It operates high-performance computing systems for all Bavarian universities and a federal high performance computer, which is available for scientific research at German universities. LRZ provides more than 100,000 users at the universities of Munich and the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and operates with general IT services. It runs an extensive communication infrastructure with disk and automated magnetic tape storage for backing up large amounts of data. Since July 2012, it is also the home of the supercomputer SuperMUC, currently one of the fastest computers in Europe. SuperMUC is an IBM System x iDataPlex with a total of more than 155,000 cores. It is distinguished by the fact that it is being cooled with hot water. This cooling concept was developed by IBM and is being used on a large scale the first time with SuperMUC.

More information about LRZ:  
More information about SVA:  
More information about IBM Storage solutions:

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