Stampede will use GPUs to reach 10 petaflops

The University of Texas at Austin is building a new supercomputer called Stampede, which will be housed in the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC). Dell servers, Intel coprocessors, and NVIDIA GPUs will comprise the hardware for the linux cluster, which is expected to reach a performance level of over 10 quadrillion calculations per second (petaflop).

“Stampede’s” Comprehensive Capabilities to Bolster U.S. Open Science Computational Resources – [utexas.edu]

When completed, Stampede will comprise several thousand Dell “Zeus” servers with each server having dual 8-core processors from the forthcoming Intel® Xeon® Processor E5 Family (formerly codenamed “Sandy Bridge-EP”) and each server with 32 gigabytes of memory. This production system will offer almost 2 petaflops of peak performance, which is double the current top system in XD, and the real performance of scientific applications will see an even greater performance boost due to the newer processor and interconnect technologies. The cluster will also include a new innovative capability: Intel® Many Integrated Core (MIC) co-processors codenamed “Knights Corner,” providing an additional 8 petaflops of performance. Intel MIC co-processors are designed to process highly parallel workloads and provide the benefits of using the most popular x86 instruction set. This will greatly simplify the task of porting and optimizing applications on Stampede to utilize the performance of both the Intel Xeon processors and Intel MIC co-processors.

Additionally, Stampede will offer 128 next-generation NVIDIA graphics processing units (GPUs) for remote visualization, 16 Dell servers with 1 terabyte of shared memory and 2 GPUs each for large data analysis, and a high-performance Lustre file system for data-intensive computing. All components will be integrated with an InfiniBand FDR 56Gb/s network for extreme scalability.

Altogether, Stampede will have a peak performance of 10 petaflops, 272 terabytes (272,000 gigabytes) of total memory, and 14 petabytes (14 million gigabytes) of disk storage.

June 2011 – [top500.org]

A Japanese supercomputer capable of performing more than 8 quadrillion calculations per second (petaflop/s) is the new number one system in the world, putting Japan back in the top spot for the first time since the Earth Simulator was dethroned in November 2004, according to the latest edition of the TOP500 List of the world’s top supercomputers. The system, called the K Computer, is at the RIKEN Advanced Institute for Computational Science (AICS) in Kobe.

The 37th edition of the closely watched list was released Monday, June 20, at the 2011 International Supercomputing Conference in Hamburg. The ranking of all systems is based on how fast they run Linpack, a benchmark application developed to solve a dense system of linear equations.

For the first time, all of the top 10 systems achieved petaflop/s performance – and those are also the only petaflop/s systems on the list. The U.S. is tops in petaflop/s with five systems performing at that level; Japan and China have two each, and France has one.

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