High performance computers are used in many military situations including weapons design, testing, battlefield modeling, and Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance activities (C4ISR). Many experts believe that it is possible to design nuclear weapons with current commercially available computers. Indeed, the first atomic weapons were designed with slide rules. SAN FRANCISCO, CA, October 28, 2009 /24-7PressRelease/ — High performance computers are used in many military situations including weapons design, testing, battlefield modeling, and Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance activities (C4ISR). Many experts believe that it is possible to design nuclear weapons with current commercially available computers. Indeed, the first atomic weapons were designed with slide rules. Nonetheless, it is pointed out that highly advanced computers such as those used in nuclear weapons laboratories are necessary to produce successive generations of such weapons with greater sophistication and capabilities.
A landmark report Worldwide Defense High Performance Computing (HPC) Market Forecast 2010-2015 released by Market Research Media Ltd estimates the global defense high performance computing market to increase from $2.6 billion in 2010 to $3.3 billion in 2015. The forecast for worldwide cumulative market 2010 – 2015 is $18 billion, for a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.7% in the 6-year period. How much do individual countries plan to spend on defense-related HPC between 2010 and 2015? Where are the major market growth opportunities in military HPC software and hardware over the next six years? How are emerging COTS solutions shaping the market? These critical questions and many more are covered in this report.
According to one proliferation expert, "acquiring supercomputers could assist China in building smaller and more efficient nuclear weapons-improvements in order to upgrade its strategic rocket forces to include multiple independent reentry vehicles (MIRV) systems- and for cruise missiles."
Supercomputing capabilities can be used to simulate nuclear explosions. However, these simulations rely on extensive data and codes obtained in part from actual tests. Relatively few countries have tested nuclear weapons, and this data is highly guarded classified material. Therefore, computing capacity is not enough to successfully simulate nuclear tests. However, for countries that have conducted tests and presumably have this data, advanced computing capability can reduce or eliminate the number of tests needed. Not only does this contribute to greater weapons capability, it also allows that country to conceal progress towards the development of such weaponry.
Battlefield management encompasses the components of command, control, communications/computers, intelligence (C3I), and reconnaissance. In the networked battlefield, management applications collect data from many sources simultaneously, favoring the input-output capabilities of a mainframe HPC. The software codes used to create battlefield management applications likewise need HPCs, but they involve computational aspects in which clustered computers can be employed. COTS (Commercial, off-the-shelf) HPC equipment such as manufactured in numerous countries can run these operations in the field.
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*Stable Growth Expected in Military Market for High Performance Computing (HPC)
*Information Technology Market
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