Acceleration technology is all the rage these days in high performance computing. With the emergence of GPGPUs into the mainstream, a whole new sub-industry has coalesced around acceleration solutions based on the latest GPUs. Maxeler Technologies, however, has made a nice living delivering FPGA acceleration to a rather elite customer base.
For the past several years, Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) have been getting large enough to compete with microprocessors in floating-point performance. Using the theoretical peak performance numbers, the FPGA’s floating-point performance is growing faster than microprocessors. This article calculates the peak performance for several FPGA devices from Xilinx and compares them to a reference microprocessor for equivalent time periods and shows that this gap in performance is growing.
In an HPC market that seems determined to go down the CPU-GPU path, upstart Convey Computer may yet offer a few surprises. The company today unveiled the sequel to its HC-1 platform it introduced in 2008. Called the HC-1ex, the new system adds a lot more performance and capability, but retains the original x86-FPGA co-processor design.
The civil engineer Konrad Zuse was born in Berlin exactly 100 years ago. In 1941, he built the world’s first computer. And thanks to his pioneering work, the scientists at the Jülich Supercomputing Center have now succeeded in setting a world record by simulating the largest quantum computer system with 42 qubits.
As high performance computing vendors polish their server and workstation portfolios with the latest multicore CPU and GPGPU wonders, Pico Computing is quietly making inroads into the HPC application space with its FPGA-based platforms. By picking the spots where reconfigurable computing makes the most sense, the company is looking to leverage its scalable FPGA technology to greatest effect.
Upgraded machine will sport 192 FPGAs and nearly a terabyte of memory.
A bioinformatics scientist looks beyond the Linux cluster.
Could the chip maker’s rumored interest in FPGAs be part of an HPC strategy?
Online, at conferences and in theory, manycore processors and the use of accelerators such as GPUs and FPGAs are being viewed as the next big revolution in high performance computing. If they can live up to the potential, these accelerators could someday transform how computational science is performed, providing much more computing power and energy efficiency.