Jülich Research on Petaflop Architectures

May 11th, 2009 10:22 am
Posted by Lee Porter
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juropa-ii1

The JuRoPA II project's intended aim is to lead the way for the next generation of general purpose cluster computing on Petaflop Architectures. It is a research activity that brings together the most experienced companies and research sites & uses state-of-the art processor, server, interconnect and cluster software technologies. INTEL, MELLANOX and PARTEC have partnered with the Jülich Supercomputer Centre (JSC) to establish an architecture based on Intel processor technology with a QDR Infiniband interconnect and the Parastation Cluster management Software.

The Jülich Supercomputer Centre (JSC) has chosen Bull as the prime contractor and SUN as the sub contractor. ParTec’s Cluster Competence Centre will manage the cluster on a day-to-day basic. The JuRoPA-II cluster consists of two parts. A 1080 node cluster from Bull (HPC-FF cluster) will be made available to the Fusion community while the 2208 node cluster from SUN is intended for general purpose use within JSC. It has a total of 3288 compute nodes based on the Intel Nehalem-EP 2.93 GHz processor. When used as a heterogeneous cluster, the 26304 cores give the machine a theoretical peak performance in excess of 300 TFlops.

The HPC-FF cluster will be used to understand the complex physical effects taking place inside the ITER fusion reactor. HPC-FF alone will deliver computing power in excess of 100 TFlops and is optimally suited to fusion scientist's simulation programs. The European Fusion Development Agreement (EFDA) has enlisted the Forschungszentrum Jülich, one of the world’s leading supercomputing centres, to host and operating the FF cluster.

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ParaStationV5, ParTec's cluster management software, will play a key role following the machine's acceptance. The driving power behind ParTec’s software solutions is the motivation to unburden the customer from many of those daily, time consuming, problems associated with cluster administration. By providing comprehensive telemetry of the machine – ParTec's GridMonitor software enables problems to be identified and fixed before they cause applications to fail. This feature is seen as particularly important in a machine with an annual power budget in excess of 1M Euros.

The JuRoPA II machine is currently under construction. Its expected completion date is mid June '09.

PART II (next week) – Details of the JuRoPA II configuration

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Author Info


Lee Porter is a HPC Interconnect specialist for the ParTec Cluster Competence Centre, GmbH. He works out of ParTec’s North American regional office in San Jose, CA and is involved with a number of large HPC implementations worldwide. His is a member of the HPC Advisory Council and has a PhD in Computational Fluid Dynamics from the University of Warwick, UK.