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Pure Storage’s FlashBlade Enables NTU Singapore to Expand Supercomputing Capabilities

All-flash storage infrastructure helps NTU researchers tackle more peta-scale data analyses while reducing energy usage and overall environmental impact
Pure Enables NTU Singapore with Supercomputing Capabilities

Singapore – March 16, 2021 — Pure Storage (NYSE: PSTG), the IT pioneer that delivers storage as a service in a multi-cloud world, today announced that Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU, Singapore), one of the world’s leading universities, has adopted Pure’s FlashBlade®, a unified fast file and object (UFFO) storage platform, to fulfil the growing demand for supercomputing resources at the university’s High Performance Computing Centre (HPCC).

Contributing to the university's research mission, the NTU HPCC processes data for projects led by NTU Singapore and its partners, ranging from genome sequencing to weather analysis. Given that up to eight supercomputing workloads could be running concurrently at any time, the HPCC team has turned to FlashBlade to support increasingly complex workloads and massive datasets. The capacity and latency improvements are expected to help more research teams from the various schools significantly reduce the time needed for their data analysis, allowing them to focus on interpreting their data and accelerate their project timelines.

One of the first to leverage FlashBlade is a genome assembly project carried out by researchers at NTU’s School of Biological Sciences. The team, led by Assistant Professor Jarkko Salojarvi, is currently in the process of sequencing and analysing the DNA of over 1,000 plant species.

Professor Salojarvi said, “If we looked at one genome a week, it would take us 20 years to cover 1,000 species, so it was important for us to run analyses in parallel. Moving to FlashBlade has enabled us to significantly speed up the process.”

With FlashBlade enabling them to run up to four jobs in parallel, the team was able to complete more than 550 assemblies in just 18 months, compared to less than 100 assemblies within the same time span if examined one by one. Being able to accelerate the project timeline means that researchers can look at expanding the research to other areas or dive deeper into specific species or types. Other researchers studying environmental conservation, climate change or the plants’ potential pharmaceutical use will also be able to tap on their findings.

The increase in computational power has also enabled the HPCC to support even more research requests while upholding its commitment to sustainability. Switching to ultra-dense all-flash technology has reduced the amount of rack space needed, allowing the HPCC team to optimise the centre’s physical space. Additionally, the lower energy and cooling requirements reduced the HPCC’s overall power consumption and minimised emissions. The combination of these two advantages allowed the HPCC to expand on its available computing resources exponentially, while still meeting energy efficiency standards.

“Every day, researchers are making new discoveries aided by the ability to process bigger and richer data sets. Backed by FlashBlade, universities and institutions like NTU Singapore are helping to push the boundaries of scientific discovery and improving our understanding of the world,” said Chua Hock Leng, Regional Managing Director, ASEAN, Pure Storage.

“FlashBlade’s ability to scale up performance while lowering I/O latency has exceeded our expectations. We are confident that we’ll be able to meet the increasing demand for supercomputing resources and strengthen NTU’s position as a world-class research-intensive university, while walking the talk when it comes to protecting the environment."

Alvin Ong
Chief Information Officer, NTU Singapore

About Pure Storage

Pure Storage (NYSE: PSTG) gives technologists their time back. Pure delivers a modern data experience that empowers organisations to run their operations as a true, automated, storage as-a-service model seamlessly across multiple clouds. One of the fastest-growing enterprise IT companies in history, Pure helps customers put data to use while reducing the complexity and expense of managing the infrastructure behind it. And with a certified customer satisfaction score in the top one percent of B2B companies, Pure's ever-expanding list of customers are among the happiest in the world.

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