Think again if you thought that the humble processor was only good for spreadsheet processing, Internet and mundane server chores. These days, processing power plays an influential role in deciding the fortunes of teams involved in the highly competitive Formula 1 race and who best to provide us with creditable testimonials and firsthand accounts on the benefits of processing power than Ferrari, the premier F1 team that has already won the world over with a series of dazzling victories.
Prior to the conclusion of the recent F1 race held at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia, www.hardwarezone.com was one of a handful of media houses to be invited and granted privileged access into the mystical confines of the Formula 1 paddocks. Naturally, we completely relished the rare opportunity to witness the many different routines of F1 personnel, but the highlights of the entire trip were the closed-door discussion with the Head of Ferrari's Racetrack Electronics and the detailed walk-through of the sacred Ferrari pit area, the telemetry and IT system section, powered by none other than AMD of course. Ever since the AMD-Ferrari partnership was formed in 2002, AMD has helped Ferrari to bag three drivers and constructors championships from 2002 to 2004.
Recognizing the unique competitive atmosphere that is the world of Formula One racing, AMD went on to strike a deal with Scuderia Ferrari in 2002 to become the team's official sponsor and technology partner. Under the partnership, the Ferrari Formula One team benefited from powerful and reliable mobile PC systems and workstations running on AMD Opteron, Athlon 64 FX, Athlon 64 and mobile AMD Athlon 64 processors for quicker real-time performance diagnostics, fluid dynamics simulations, and telemetry applications.
Thanks to the AMD64 technology inherent within all modern AMD processors, the Ferrari IT department was able to take performance to even greater heights without incurring higher overheads from having to upgrade to 64-bit applications across the board. This was possible because AMD64 technology is both 32-bit and 64-bit compatible; hence the Ferrari IT department was able to continue using its suite of customized 32-bit applications for team developments while having the option to move to 64-bit applications when required in future to further meet their growing demands.
The technology from AMD also plays a critical role in the Ferrari Data Center where AMD Opteron processors have helped to reduce the time required for aerodynamic simulations, thereby enabling the team to carry out more tests in the wind tunnel. This higher throughput of intense calculation also enabled Ferrari to better simulate aerodynamics behavior to actual weather conditions and to create a safer racing environment for drivers.