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Fujitsu offers 16-core Sparc chip to HPC customers

No GPGPU here
Tue Nov 08 2011, 12:03

SUPERCOMPUTER VENDOR Fujitsu is offering its customers access to the same kit that powers the world record holding K-Computer.

fujisu-rackFujitsu is offering customers the PRIMEHPC FX10, which is built from the same components that power the K-Computer. The cluster can be scaled to 1,024 racks with a total of 98,304 nodes delivering up to 23.2 petaflops of compute power.

Fujitsu's 1.848GHz Sparc IXfx chip - the firm is one of Oracle's few Sparc licensees - can access 32GB or 64GB RAM, for a cluster maximum of 6,291TB connected to a 85GB/sec memory bus. The inter-node transfer rate, which is of vital importance for massively parallel high performance computing (HPC) workloads, is 5GB/s each way.

Not surprisingly, Fujitsu runs a Linux-based operating system on the PRIMEHPC FX10 and offers optimised compilers for C, C++ and Fortran.

Fujitsu's K-Computer, which at the time was powered by 8-core Sparc chips, took the top spot in the prestigious Top500 list earlier this year. Since then the K-Computer has been upgraded and is expected to be in first place once again when the latest Top500 is published next week.

While Fujitsu shows off its 16-core Sparc chip, next week's Top500 list will also see AMD's 16-core Bulldozer Opteron chips appear, with the Jaguar tipped for an upgrade. Interestingly, even with GPGPU acceleration in vogue, Fujitsu's and AMD's HPC partners are still heavily reliant on traditional CPU power for many workloads.

Fujitsu said that it expects to ship 50 PRIMEHPC FX10 clusters within the next three years. µ


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