Since 1986 - Covering the Fastest Computers in the World and the People Who Run Them

Language Flags
May 16, 2013

Running Computational Fluid Dynamics in the Cloud

Ian Armas Foster

There are several limitations to performing HPC in a public cloud, a few specific to computational fluid dynamics (CFD). An intensive CFD application will, like other parallel scientific computing applications, have to map out pieces of itself in parallel and report back to the source several times before synthesizing.

When it comes to cloud, long distances mean unacceptably high latencies. Researchers from the University of Bonn in Germany examined those latency issues of doing CFD modeling in the cloud by utilizing a common CFD and its utilization in HPC instance types including both CPU and GPU cores of Amazon EC2.

For CPUs in Amazon’s EC2 cluster, they found that the application running on 8 CPU cores had an efficiency of 70 percent relative to a non-virtualized HPC cluster. “Beyond that limit, we run into network interconnect bandwidth problems if we do not reserve more instances. After an explicit request for more CPU compute instances, we have seen even for up to 256 CPU cores / 32 instances an acceptable parallel efficiency of more than 50 percent.”

With regard to the GPUs, they found similar acceptable levels at 8 GPU cores but the performance petered out with further scaling. “Overall, we expect an acceptable scaling on more than 128 CPU cores or more than 8 GPUs if we pre-request an appropriate number of instances and avoid ECC in the case of GPUs.”

In short, according to the researchers,“we believe that Amazon’s HPC cloud is well prepared for moderately sized parallel CFD problems on up to 64 CPU cores or 8 GPUs.” That bodes well for the future of mid-level scientific HPC performed in the cloud.

May 16, 2013

Running Computational Fluid Dynamics in the Cloud

Nicole Hemsoth

There are several limitations to performing HPC in a public cloud, a few specific to computational fluid dynamics (CFD). An intensive CFD application will, like other parallel scientific computing applications, have to map out pieces of itself in parallel and report back to the source several times before synthesizing.

When it comes to cloud, long distances mean unacceptably high latencies. Researchers from the University of Bonn in Germany examined those latency issues of doing CFD modeling in the cloud by utilizing a common CFD and its utilization in HPC instance types including both CPU and GPU cores of Amazon EC2.

For CPUs in Amazon’s EC2 cluster, they found that the application running on 8 CPU cores had an efficiency of 70 percent relative to a non-virtualized HPC cluster. “Beyond that limit, we run into network interconnect bandwidth problems if we do not reserve more instances. After an explicit request for more CPU compute instances, we have seen even for up to 256 CPU cores / 32 instances an acceptable parallel efficiency of more than 50 percent.”

With regard to the GPUs, they found similar acceptable levels at 8 GPU cores but the performance petered out with further scaling. “Overall, we expect an acceptable scaling on more than 128 CPU cores or more than 8 GPUs if we pre-request an appropriate number of instances and avoid ECC in the case of GPUs.”

In short, according to the researchers,“we believe that Amazon’s HPC cloud is well prepared for moderately sized parallel CFD problems on up to 64 CPU cores or 8 GPUs.” That bodes well for the future of mid-level scientific HPC performed in the cloud.

SC14 Virtual Booth Tours

AMD SC14 video AMD Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video
Cray SC14 video Cray Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video
Datasite SC14 video DataSite and RedLine @ SC14
Click to Play Video
HP SC14 video HP Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video
IBM DCS3860 and Elastic Storage @ SC14 video IBM DCS3860 and Elastic Storage @ SC14
Click to Play Video
IBM Flash Storage
@ SC14 video IBM Flash Storage @ SC14  
Click to Play Video
IBM Platform @ SC14 video IBM Platform @ SC14
Click to Play Video
IBM Power Big Data SC14 video IBM Power Big Data @ SC14
Click to Play Video
Intel SC14 video Intel Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video
Lenovo SC14 video Lenovo Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video
Mellanox SC14 video Mellanox Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video
Panasas SC14 video Panasas Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video
Quanta SC14 video Quanta Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video
Seagate SC14 video Seagate Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video
Supermicro SC14 video Supermicro Virtual Booth Tour @ SC14
Click to Play Video