NOVEMBER 3, 2008 -- Arizona State University (ASU) and Obsidian Strategics (search for Obsidian Strategics), developer of InfiniBand range extension, routing, and encryption technology, have announced a public-private partnership to explore faster, more efficient data server/transfer technologies for use at the ASU High Performance Computing Initiative (HPCI) facilities, on the ASU campus in downtown Tempe.
ASU and Obsidian will join with others to advance the capabilities of the optical network linking the higher education facilities in Arizona as well as to adjacent states. According to both parties, this enhanced network will establish:
• A test bed from which to further explore/optimize high-bandwidth, low-latency switching, routing, and encryption technologies and applications, pushing the limits of today's leading HPC offerings; and
• A real-world production environment capable of large-scale remote transfer of or access to research and scientific data sets along with geographically separated data replication (disaster tolerance for very large, valuable data sets).
ASU and others can utilize the network infrastructure in a variety of existing and new endeavors in the area of biomedical research, distributed access to large-scale computation and distributed large-scale storage, while Obsidian says it will work closely with researchers and network administrators to ensure the most advanced and appropriate features are developed, tested, and implemented on the network.
"This partnership with Obsidian Strategics could provide ASU with bandwidth capacity that would rival any other State's current initiative and provide Arizona with a distinct advantage in speed and capabilities," contends Dr. Dan Stanzione, director of the HPCI at ASU. "ASU is very excited to be a part of this initiative that could well draw international attention to and investment in the growing Arizona bioscience and technology corridor."
Obsidian says its Longbow products drive point-to-point optical connections that enable high-speed data transfer in minutes, in what would otherwise take hours, even days to pass from one researcher to another over current networking infrastructures.
"Arizona State University is committed to growing the infrastructure to support our researchers," adds Dr. Rick Shangraw, ASU's vice president for research and economic affairs. "The partnership with Obsidian places us at the cutting edge of high-bandwidth computing at a time when this type of infrastructure is critical to building strong partnerships with our sponsors and collaborators."
According to Obsidian, its Longbow products seamlessly stretch these connections over global distances--leveraging existing optical networks while preserving local link performance. The Longbow technology was designed to meet the mission critical demands of the Department of Defense's next-generation Large Data communications architecture.
"The ASU-Obsidian partnership can showcase new ways to leverage regional optical networks, promoting more efficient utilization of large-scale computers and storage, reducing overall energy consumption, and massively improving remote access--in a way that facilitates state-wide collaboration," notes Dr. David Southwell, president of Obsidian Strategics.
This initiative is supported by the Canadian Consulate-Phoenix, which plays a key role in making strategic introductions across theÂ State's universities, research facilities, local community, andÂ commercial companies.