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Supercomputer boost for SKA bid

A supercomputer 10,000 times faster than the average office computer has been installed at The University of Western Australia as part of the Australian bid to host the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), the world’s largest radio telescope.

The computer is part of an AU$80 million federal government project aimed at bolstering the bid for the telescope to be sited in Western Australia and to make Perth a global top 20 supercomputing hub by 2013, the university said on 7 February.

The computer will offer scientists “unprecedented access to high-powered, data-intensive computing, particularly for astronomy signal processing (including the SKA) and geoscience research,” according to the university’s statement.