NEC has withdrawn its participation in a Japanese government programme to build a supercomputer.The firm is citing the current economic climate for its decision to pull out of the Next-Generation Supercomputer Project (PDF) run by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. NEC said that it would be not extending its current contract into the manufacturing phase of the project."NEC estimated that costs for moving forward with the manufacturing phase of the Next-Generation Supercomputer Project would significantly impact earnings for the fiscal year ending in March 2010, due to extensive investment required for the computer's manufacturing. Therefore, NEC has decided not to participate in the project's manufacturing phase," the firm said in a statement.Although NEC will continue to contribute to the programme in a number of ways, including providing architectural and development support, the firm is investigating ways to save money in the challenging economic climate."NEC will now contribute to the project through the application of new vector architecture and optical interconnect technologies completed during the design phase, in addition to architectural research for rapid computing, development, education and operational support for application software with universities and research institutions," the company said.So far this year, NEC has announced plans to exit the PC business in all areas but its local markets, and to lay off some 20,000 workers.
Issue: 343 | October 2015