GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms Announces GRA111 for Supercomputing Applications in Harsh Environments


CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA, November 17, 2009    GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms, a unit of GE Enterprise Solutions, today announced the OpenVPX-compatible GRA111 high performance graphics board. Further developing the relationship announced on October 8 by GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms and NVIDIA® Corporation, the GRA111 is not only among the first commercially-available products to feature NVIDIA’s newly-announced GT 240 GPU (graphics processing unit), but is also the first rugged implementation of a CUDA-capable GPU.
The GRA111 is the first member of GE Fanuc’s planned family of CUDA-enabled products that are expected to revolutionize military and aerospace embedded computing by bringing a ‘supercomputing’ capability to applications and environments that require leading edge processing such as radar, signals intelligence and video surveillance and interpretation.
“The enormous potential of the GPGPU – the general purpose graphics processing unit – with its massively parallel computing architecture is just beginning to become apparent to developers in the military and aerospace field,” said Rob McKeel, Vice President, Embedded Systems at GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms. “What we are announcing today is an exciting first: a new compact, lightweight platform that can deliver exceptional levels of computing performance in demanding applications and challenging environments.”
NVIDIA’s CUDA is a general purpose parallel computing architecture that takes advantage of the parallel compute engine in NVIDIA GPUs to solve many computational problems in a fraction of the time required on a general purpose CPU. It includes the CUDA Instruction Set Architecture (ISA) and the parallel compute engine of the GPU.
CUDA has been shown to deliver a 100x increase in speed in a broad range of applications that lend themselves to parallel computing. Early tests at GE Fanuc have shown that military applications can benefit from similar increases in speed.   A major prime contractor in the military/aerospace industry has evaluated the CUDA architecture in a radar system, and found that performance improvement of 15x is achievable with minimal reprogramming effort. Other prime contractors are expressing substantial interest in the technology.
The 3U format GRA111 derives much of its astonishing performance from the 96 cores, 128-bit memory interface, 1 GByte of DDR3 video memory, 16-lane PCI Express Gen 2 interface, 540MHz graphics clock and 1,302MHz processor clock of the NVIDIA GT 240 GPU. 
Optionally available as an LRM (Line Replaceable Module) in accordance with the VPX-REDI (VITA 48) standard and with a rich set of I/O, the advanced capabilities of the GRA111 can also be applied to many of the most common graphics and video applications. Dual, independent channels mean that it is capable of driving RGB analog component video, digital DVI 1.0, and HDMI standards. In addition, the GRA111’s video input capability allows integration of sensor data using RS170, NTSC or PAL video formats.
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About GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms
GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms, a joint venture between General Electric Company (NYSE: GE) and FANUC LTD of Japan, is an experienced high-performance technology company and a global provider of hardware, software, services, and expertise in automation and embedded computing. We offer a unique foundation of agile, advanced and ultra-reliable technology that provides customers a sustainable advantage in the industries they serve, including energy, water, consumer packaged goods, government & defense, and telecommunications. GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms is a worldwide company headquartered in Charlottesville, VA and is part of GE Enterprise Solutions. For more information, visit
About GE Enterprise Solutions
GE Enterprise Solutions elevates customers' productivity and profitability with integrated solutions using sensors and non-destructive testing; security and life safety technologies; power system protection and control; and plant automation and embedded computing systems. Enterprise Solutions' high-tech, high-growth businesses include Sensing & Inspection Technologies, Security, Digital Energy, and GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms. The business has 17,000 problem-solving employees in more than 60 countries around the world.
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Ian McMurray, GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms
+44 (0) 1327 322821
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