Nov 20, 2008

Another in SC08

・ Now I like to add another with some photos that I couldn't write because of not enough time to write during SC08.

BG/P Board

・ First, a board being put casually in the booth of IBM is a board of the Blue Gene/P. There are 32 computational node(processor)s and 2 I/O node(processor)s on the board. A power supply places around center line. A four core-SMP is inside a processor chip in the Blue Gene/P. The performances per board is 435 GFLOPS in double/single precision. Its reliability (MTBF) is 10 to 100 times higher than commodity-based cluster systems. The Blue Gene satisfies exact MPP specifications after all.


・ In contrast, IBM iDataPlex is the latest commodity-based cluster by IBM. It looks two racks because the iDataPlex rack is designed using depth of a common rack for width and width for depth approximately in order to improve heat removal capability. It is a state-of-the-art cluster of high density and the high cooling efficiency.


・ Next is a panel of the Bluefire system that was exhibited in the booth of NCAR, a leading weather research institute. This is water-cooled cluster system using IBM Power 575 with 4.7GHz POWER6 processor. Many of weather research institutes are using IBM Power 575 cluster system in the world.


・ This is a system of the container type by the Rackable that facilitates cluster system and air conditioning in the trailer. It can move and start a data center anywhere. The wheels are seen under the trailer. The wind of air-conditioning blew to my face when entering inside. The passage is arranged in center and servers and equipment are rack-mounted on the wall side. Since such a data center can start up in a short term in a disaster or a big event, it might be very convenient for the purpose.


・ The following is a NVIDIA booth that crowded in the first day. The personal computer that was enhanced with Tesla GPGPU was exhibited.The signboard explains it as almost one million yen for 960 cores and 3.732TFLOPS.
It is certainly surprising but the performance figure is only for single precision operation. Many researchers variously pointed out when Cell/B.E processor was announced, if double precision arithmetic is not very fast, It is not a practical solution in the large-scale HPC computational use. Because a huge number of arithmetic operations gradually degrade accuracy of calculation due to rounding error and so on, and a single precision cannot remain reasonable amount of digits in typical peta-scale calculation at least.


・ SONY showed a new server including their Cell/B.E processor and NVIDIA RSX (GPU) in the booth of Argo Graphics. They demonstrated a real time visualization with AVS parallel version of the KGT Co. while simulation runs on the cluster consists of four servers as shown in the photo. It is interesting that such a HPC system is provided comparatively affordable price (but still order of million yen).Even in the Cray booth, a super computer on the desk side was exhibited.

We can imagine that these affordable HPC system drags younger students to HPC in future, and they can actually get HPC skill with such a system, can't we?