Press Archive

PRAGMA and Cray Inc. Form Strategic Alliance

Published 09/19/2003

Enabling the sharing of expertise, as well as computational resources between universities, research institutes and industry will be an essential thrust of the new alliance between the Pacific Rim Application and Grid Middleware Assembly (PRAGMA) and Cray Inc. This alliance focuses on advancing the development of applications that take advantage of computational grids - crossing organizational and geographical boundaries.

Recognizing the valuable role of industry in grid development, PRAGMA initiated the Industrial Affiliate program to encourage mutually beneficial collaborations between industry and the research community, with the goal of promoting the adoption and use of grid technologies. In addition to participation in PRAGMA meetings and workshops, Industrial Affiliate members are involved in technical projects and may provide resources to support PRAGMA's efforts.

"We are delighted to have Cray join PRAGMA as our first Industrial Affiliate Member," says Dr. Peter Arzberger, Chair of the PRAGMA Steering Committee. "PRAGMA will benefit from Cray's expertise in high-performance computing, desire to help us reach our goals, and understanding of the application needs of the scientific community."

Cray has been working with PRAGMA affiliates over the past year on a project to demonstrate successful use of Nimrod/G and GAMESS on computational grids. The demonstration, unveiled at the PRAGMA Workshop in June, showed utilization of grid technology to parameterize a quantum chemical pseudo-potential.

"The results of the demonstration significantly reinforced our early work in computing pseudo-potentials for organic functional groups, which play a key role in many chemical processes ," said Dr. Wibke Sudholt, a collaborator on the project, together with Dr. David Abramson of Monash University and the Australian Partnership for Advanced Computing, Dr. Kim Baldridge of the University of California San Diego and the San Diego Supercomputer Center, and researchers at Victoria Partnership for Advanced Computing, Kasetsart University, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, and Cray Inc. Japan. "Most importantly, this technology will allow us to explore many more parameter combinations than we have been able to do in the past."

Future applications of this technology could range from understanding complex biochemical reactions, to the design of new drugs, to understanding the basic structural-functional relationships in materials.

"Cray Inc. is interested in understanding the needs of the emerging grid community and the applications for this new technology," said Richard Russell, Cray's Vice President of Asia-Pacific Sales. "We feel that our alliance with PRAGMA will help us to better understand the grid-technology needs of our customers. It also presents the opportunity to demonstrate how Cray systems can advance scientific progress, while actively sponsoring development of international applications and collaborations."

"Cray's involvement is a win-win situation from which everyone involved benefits," says Dr. Jysoo Lee, Deputy Chair, PRAGMA Steering Committee. "We look forward to a long-standing relationship with industry, and we are delighted that Cray is the first participant. They provide a coherent vision and an excellent model for others."

Cray Inc. is a premier provider of supercomputing solutions for its customers' most challenging scientific and engineering problems. Please see: http:// www.cray.com for more information about the company.

PRAGMA is an open, institutional-based organization, formed to establish sustained collaborations and to advance the use of grid technologies in applications among a community of investigators working with leading institutions around the Pacific Rim. Applications are the focus of PRAGMA and are used to bring together the key infrastructure and middleware necessary to advance application goals.

PRAGMA is supported by its eighteen member institutions as well as the National Science Foundation's (Grant No. INT-0314015) Office of International Science and Engineering, Division of Shared Cyberinfrastructure (SCI) and Research, Division of Advanced Networking and Research, and Division of Biological Infrastructure.

For more information on PRAGMA, please visit http://www.pragma-grid.net/.


PRAGMA Contact: Teri Simas, PRAGMA Program Manager, +1 858-534-5034