Argonne is home to several computers considered among the most powerful in the nation. Mira, a 10-petaflops IBM Blue Gene/Q system, is capable of 10 quadrillion calculations per second. And Theta, an 11.69-petaflops Intel/Cray system, is faster yet, facilitating breakthrough computational science and engineering research.
Greater computer speed offers broader, deeper, and faster research potential. Enter exascale, a still theoretical but highly promising giant leap for supercomputing. Exascale will enable scientists and engineers to expand beyond traditional simulation-based research to include data science and machine learning approaches - a fundamental shift in the use of emerging computing technologies for analysis and discovery.
Argonne is in the forefront of the effort to make exascale a reality. In 2015, Argonne announced a plan to build Aurora. In 2017, this plan was enhanced to make Aurora the world's first exascale computer. The impact and applications of Aurora could include improved extreme weather forecasting, accelerated medical treatments, advances in material sciences, and better understanding of astrophysics phenomena - including deeper exploration of the beginnings of the universe.
Argonne's Aurora system will further advance and accelerate scientific research and discovery in the United States by harnessing the convergence of high-performance computing and artificial intelligence at unprecedented scale. When Aurora comes online at Argonne in 2021, it will help ensure continued U.S. leadership in high-end computing for scientific research while also cementing the U.S.'s position as global leader in the development of next-generation, exascale computing systems.