Primeur magazine

Edition: live - Issue: 2012-06-21

Hardware

Mark Parsons from EPCC at the University of Edinburgh introduced CRESTA at ISC'12. CRESTA is an EC-funded project which is dealing with software co-design on the road to Exascale. The project has two integrated strands: one focused on enabling a key set of co-design applications for exascale, the other focused on building and exploring appropriate systemware for exascale platforms. Read further...
The Partnership for Advance Computing in Europe (PRACE) explores a set of prototypes to test and evaluate promising new technologies for future multi-Petaflop/s systems. These include GPUs, ARM processors, DSPs and FPGAs as well as novel I/O solutions and hot water cooling. A common goal of all prototypes is to evaluate energy-consumption in terms of "energy-to-solution" to be able to estimate the suitability of those components for future high-end systems. The "Future Technologies" work package has developed an energy-to-solution benchmark suite. A synopsis of the assessments and selected results were presented in a short series of presentations and discussions at the PRACE ISC'12 BOF session. Read further...
Ulrich Brüning from the University of Heidelberg presented the European Union-funded DEEP project. The goal is to combine two types of systems so that lowly scalable machines send data to the booster of highly scalable systems. In this regard DEEP will develop a scalable interconnect for a booster with Knights Corner processors. Read further...
Alex Ramirez from the Barcelona Supercomputer Center presented the EC-funded Mont Blanc project. Mont Blanc is a European HPC Platform based on embedded energy-efficient technology. Many important decisions are still pending on how to build this powerful European supercomputer. The road to the top of the HPC mountain is a long one but the Mont Blanc team is very persistent and strong. Read further...

Applications

The PRACE Scientific Steering Committee (SSC) selected the winner of the PRACE Award in 2012. The Award was presented at the Opening Session of ISC'12 (International Supercomputing Conference) in Hamburg on Monday, June 18th, 2012. This year's PRACE Award goes to the paper "A Fast & Scalable Low Dimensional Solver for Charged Particle Dynamics in Large Particle Accelerators" signed by a group of authors: Yves Ineichen (Paul Scherrer Institut, IBM Research - Zurich, and ETH Zürich), Andreas Adelmann (Paul Scherrer Institut), Costas Bekas (IBM Research - Zurich), Alessandro Curioni (IBM Research - Zurich), and Peter Arbenz (ETH Zürich). Read further...

TOP500

The 39th TOP500 list was released on Monday, June 18, at the 2012 International Supercomputing Conference (ISC) in Hamburg, Germany. Four European systems are in the top 10: SuperMUC at no. 4, FERMI at no. 7, JUQUEEN at no. 8 and CURIE thin nodes at no. 9. Read further...
The 2012 International Supercomputing Conference (ISC'12) concluded its 27th meeting after drawing a record 2,403 attendees and 175 of the leading high performance computing vendors and research organisations from around the world. ISC'12 was held June 17-21 at the Congress Center Hamburg. Read further...

Company news

AMD has launched Cloudera certification for an AMD-based Colfax server cluster, bringing more value to big data without an unnecessary price premium. The cluster consists of six Colfax 2U CX2270-N4 servers - each with two AMD Opteron 6200 Series processors - running the popular Cloudera Distribution including Apache Hadoop2. The 192-core cluster costs up to 40 percent less than similarly configured Intel-based solutions, enabling required scale-out capabilities at the best price and value for Hadoop on x86 processors. Read further...
AMD has 24 of the top 100 supercomputers in the 39th TOP500 list, while making significant strides in maturing its HPC ecosystem through the addition of several key components that enable end users to continue to benefit from best-in-class price/performance1 for today's demanding applications. Read further...
Super Micro Computer Inc. debuts its newest innovative architecture, FatTwin at ISC, giving the public its first hands-on look at the future of power-efficient supercomputing. The FatTwin is a new 4U high-performance, high-capacity platform that offers versatile configurations for HPC with multi-node models that support dual 135W Intel Xeon E5-2600 processors, up to 8 hot-swap 3.5" HDDs in 1U and up to 8 GPUs in 2U. This new architecture is also designed to operate in high ambient temperatures providing greater performance while reducing cooling infrastructure costs. Read further...
Acer Group has become a global authorized reseller of Altair’s market-leading resource and workload management software product, PBS Professional. An expert in worldwide computing, Acer has added PBS Professional as a pre-integrated option on all its high-performance computing (HPC) systems that are configured, deployed and managed as part of the overall system. The integrated solution will drive significant operational efficiencies and cost savings to users seeking to maximize the value of their HPC systems. Read further...