Aug 30, 2011

Swift Engineering Selects Platform HPC to Build Faster and Better Race Cars, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Planes

Platform Computing enables Swift to run larger Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analyses and bring Formula Nippon cars and jet planes to market quickly.

Platform Computing, the leader in cluster, grid and cloud management software, today announced that Swift Engineering, a leader in the design and fabrication of composite structures, has selected Platform HPC (the foundation for Cray Cluster Manager) as its management solution. Swift uses Platform HPC for high performance vehicle design testing and simulation to maintain its position as a leading developer and manufacturer of world-class light-weight composite aerodynamic vehicles. Swift looked to enhance its Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) capabilities and chose Platform HPC and Cray's CX1 and CX1000 to expedite testing of new vehicle designs. With Platform HPC, Swift can now solve larger engineering problems quickly and process data up to 50 times faster than before. Analyses can also be run in parallel, allowing Swift to complete significantly more computations within a single day.

Swift's Platform HPC deployment is currently focused on Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), enabling the Swift team to easily simulate new ideas without having to build scale models or conduct extensive wind tunnel testing on each design iteration. As one of its first achievements leveraging Platform HPC, Swift designed the next generation of its Formula Nippon racecar for Japan's premier formula racing series. The cluster technology allowed the design team to quickly vet concepts without scale models and extensive wind tunnel testing, enabling faster time to market and an aerodynamic design that achieves high downforce values as well as high cornering speeds that are approximately four times greater than gravity.

"Finding ways to reduce the design cycle and expedite testing through computer simulation reduces the time to market of our premier racecars and jet planes. Platform HPC is the ideal solution for Swift to accomplish this," said Chris Norris, Chief Engineer, Swift Engineering. "We've seen incredible results through the management software. Platform HPC enables Swift to solve bigger problems with more enhanced graphics at real time speed and process vast amounts of data 50 times faster."

Platform HPC redefines usability by taking the complexity out of creating, using, managing and monitoring cluster environments. Users can create a complete HPC environment without being dependent on IT or an HPC administrator, enabling Swift to completely manage its cluster with its existing team. Platform HPC's robust cluster and workload management, monitoring, and reporting capabilities allow for shorter time to system readiness and higher user productivity.

Prior to deploying Platform HPC, Swift relied solely on an in-house, two-workstation solution. With Cray and Platform support services and the ease-of-use delivered by the Platform HPC management interface, Swift was able to transition to a full-scale HPC cluster within one week. Swift engineers can now evaluate concepts within hours instead of days and make design changes in real time. Moving forward, Platform HPC will be used to manage crash simulation, Finite Element Analysis (FEA), and CFD jobs so that Swift can run more complex workflows for multiple vehicles.

"The ease of use and management capabilities available with Platform HPC make cluster and grid computing accessible to a wider user set than ever possible before, enabling organizations to take their compute power to new levels without the need for arduous IT administration," said Tripp Purvis, Vice President, Business Development, Platform Computing. "Swift Engineering is a prime example of a company built upon the efficiency and effectiveness of their technology solutions, and we're proud to provide the HPC component of their winning team."