Plans for Geraldton supercomputing centre at Narngulu to service science and industry globally

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Geoff VivianGeraldton Guardian
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The super computers to be installed at Narngulu include a patented immersion-cooling system.
Camera IconThe super computers to be installed at Narngulu include a patented immersion-cooling system. Credit: DUG/Supplied, DUG

Narngulu’s former abattoir site is to be the home of a supercomputing centre its owners say will service science and industry worldwide.

DUG technology founder and CEO Matt Lamont said it would generate hundreds of jobs during construction and “one or two dozen” regular jobs after the first of 10 “data halls” was commissioned next year.

“What we envisage is a lot of the jobs in the data centre itself are TAFE graduate type jobs so we can get them trained up,” he said.

“The special talents we think will fit are TAFE graduates with a pragmatism and work ethic to get things done, which we think will fit in well with your town.”

Super computers process the massive amounts of data needed, for example, to analyse human DNA or generate images from radio telescope scans.

Mr Lamont said the West Perth company now had branches in London, Houston and Kuala Lumpur servicing diverse clients including radio-astronomy, biomedicine and meteorology, as well as the resource, government and education sectors.

“Traditionally supercomputing is provided by government and public facilities and national laboratories,” Mr Lamont said.

“There is this wave or shifts around the world to use private facilities along with national facilities.

“Both have their advantages but we are able to be very nimble, cost effective and service oriented.”

While much of the data from the Murchison Widefield Array telescope is processed at the government-funded Pawsey centre in Perth, Mr Lamont said two of its scientists already used the DUG private facility.

Mr Lamont said DUG designed, owned, and operated a network of some of the largest and greenest supercomputers on Earth.

“The company continues to invest and innovate at the forefront of software and HPC, working towards a zero-carbon future,” he said.

There is this huge push globally for high performance computers to become green — with a lot of our tenders they are asking for our green credentials and carbon foot print.

Mr Lamont said the Yamatji Nation peoples would assume ownership of the land later this year and supported the planned project as a source of jobs for members.

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