GPUs Power Five of World’s Top Seven Supercomputers

By Tiffany Trader

June 25, 2018

The top 10 echelon of the newly minted Top500 list boasts three powerful new systems with one common engine: the Nvidia Volta V100 general-purpose graphics processor. With the rollout of the 50th Top500 listing in Frankfurt this morning, Nvidia highlighted its role in powering the new number one system, Summit at Oak Ridge National Lab; the new number three system, Sierra at Livermore Lab, and Japan’s new fastest supercomputer, the number-five machine, ABCI. Nvidia GPUs are also under the hood of the world’s fastest industrial supercomputer, Italian energy company Eni’s HPC4 system, which enters the list at number 13.

Debuting at Oak Ridge National Lab earlier this month, the new number-one champ Summit achieved 122.30 petaflops on its Linpack submission, recapturing the U.S lead at the top of the list and displacing China’s Sunway TaihuLight, now in second place with 93 Linpack petaflops (out of a potential 125 theoretical peak petaflops). The benchmarked Summit is spec’d at 187.66 petaflops peak, putting its Linpack efficiency at 65 percent. You’ll note that the Rpeak is 28 petaflops shy of the full build comprised of 4,608 IBM Power9 nodes, which at 7.8 teraflops per V100 GPU comes out to 215.65 peak petaflops based on the GPUs alone (the Power9s add roughly 5 percent more flops). “At the point that we had to turn it in, that was as large as we could run,” Buddy Bland, project director of the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility, told HPCwire, “and it will continue to get better.”

Sierra, based at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and purchased under the same CORAL RFP as Summit, was somewhat of a surprise entrant in third position with 71.61 Linpack petaflops out of 119.19 Rpeak petaflops, delivered using 17,280 GPUs. That’s a Linpack efficiency of 60 percent. Both machines were built by IBM in collaboration with Nvidia and Mellanox for the United States Department of Energy, but Sierra’s deployment was running a few weeks behind Summit, so it was not certain (from our perspective at least) that it would be benchmarked in time for this list installation.

The IBM/Nvidia/Mellanox CORAL machines Summit and Sierra also took the first two spots on the HPCG benchmark. On the Green500, there was a large spread between the machines with the six-GPU node Summit at number five and four-GPU node Sierra ranked 276th.

Source: Top500 (June 2018, systems 1-10)

In fifth place, Japan’s fastest system AI Bridging Cloud Infrastructure (ABCI) delivers 19.6 petaflops of performance (out of a peak of 32.58 petaflops) using 4,352 V100 GPUs. The Fujitsu-made supercomputer is installed in Japan at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) at the Kashiwa II campus of the University of Tokyo. (See our earlier coverage here.)

Nvidia also powers two existing top ten machines: the Cray XC50 Piz Daint – Europe’s fastest, deployed at the Swiss National Supercomputing Centre (CSCS) – and the previous U.S. title-holder Titan, installed at Oak Ridge National Lab in 2012 as an upgrade to Jaguar. Delivering 19.5 petaflops of Linpack performance using 5,320 P100 GPUs, Piz Daint drops to sixth place from its previous third-place position. Titan, the Cray XK7 with Nvidia K20x’s that was once the world fastest supercomputer (with 17.59 petaflops of Linpack performance) fell two spots to number seven.

“The new systems reflect the broader shift to accelerators in the Top500 list,” said Nvidia, characterizing the machines as “AI supercomputers … uniquely capable of processing both traditional HPC simulations and revolutionary new AI workloads.”

“GPUs now power five out of the world’s seven fastest systems as well as 17 of the 20 most energy efficient systems on the new Green500 list,” the company remarked, adding that the “majority of computing performance added to the Top500 list comes from Nvidia GPUs.”

The Volta Tensor Core GPU makes it possible to “combine simulation with the power of AI to advance science, find cures for disease and develop new forms of energy,” said CUDA inventor Ian Buck.

The same GPUs are also inside HPC4, the new entrant at number 13 that is the world’s most powerful publicly announced commercial system, providing 12.21 Linpack petaflops (out of a potential theoretical 18.62 petaflops) for Italian energy company Eni’s oil and gas exploration activities. Built by Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), the cluster encompasses 1,600 ProLiant DL380 nodes, each equipped with two Intel 24-core Skylake processors and two Nvidia Tesla P100 GPU accelerators.

The latest Top500 report includes 110 systems with some manner of accelerator and/or co-processor technology, up from 101 six months ago. 98 are equipped with Nvidia chips, seven systems utilize Intel Xeon Phi (coprocessor) technology and four are using PEZY technology. Two systems (ranked 52 and 252) employ a combination of Nvidia and Intel Xeon Phi accelerators/coprocessors. The newly upgraded Tianhe-2a (now in fourth position with 61.44 petaflops up from 33.86 petaflops), installed at the National Super Computer Center in Guangzhou, employs custom-built Matrox-2000 accelerators. 19 systems now use Xeon Phi as the main processing unit.

“This year’s Top500 list represents a clear shift toward systems that support both HPC and AI computing,” said Jack Dongarra, professor at the University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Top500 author.  “Accelerators, such as GPUs, are critical to deliver this capability at the performance and efficiency targets demanded by the supercomputing community.”

Source: Top500 (June 2018, systems 11-15)
Subscribe to HPCwire's Weekly Update!

Be the most informed person in the room! Stay ahead of the tech trends with industy updates delivered to you every week!

Watch Nvidia’s GTC21 Keynote with Jensen Huang Livestreamed Here at HPCwire

April 9, 2021

Join HPCwire right here on Monday, April 12, at 8:30 am PT to see the Nvidia GTC21 keynote from Nvidia’s CEO, Jensen Huang, livestreamed in its entirety. Hosted by HPCwire, you can click to join the Huang keynote on our livestream to hear Nvidia’s expected news and... Read more…

The US Places Seven Additional Chinese Supercomputing Entities on Blacklist

April 8, 2021

As tensions between the U.S. and China continue to simmer, the U.S. government today added seven Chinese supercomputing entities to an economic blacklist. The U.S. Entity List bars U.S. firms from supplying key technolog Read more…

Argonne Supercomputing Supports Caterpillar Engine Design

April 8, 2021

Diesel fuels still account for nearly ten percent of all energy-related U.S. carbon emissions – most of them from heavy-duty vehicles like trucks and construction equipment. Energy efficiency is key to these machines, Read more…

Habana’s AI Silicon Comes to San Diego Supercomputer Center

April 8, 2021

Habana Labs, an Intel-owned AI company, has partnered with server maker Supermicro to provide high-performance, high-efficiency AI computing in the form of new training and inference servers that will power the upcoming Read more…

Intel Partners Debut Latest Servers Based on the New Intel Gen 3 ‘Ice Lake’ Xeons

April 7, 2021

Fresh from Intel’s launch of the company’s latest third-generation Xeon Scalable “Ice Lake” processors on April 6 (Tuesday), Intel server partners Cisco, Dell EMC, HPE and Lenovo simultaneously unveiled their first server models built around the latest chips. And though arch-rival AMD may... Read more…

AWS Solution Channel

Volkswagen Passenger Cars Uses NICE DCV for High-Performance 3D Remote Visualization

 

Volkswagen Passenger Cars has been one of the world’s largest car manufacturers for over 70 years. The company delivers more than 6 million automobiles to global customers every year, from 50 production locations on five continents. Read more…

What’s New in HPC Research: Tundra, Fugaku, µHPC & More

April 6, 2021

In this regular feature, HPCwire highlights newly published research in the high-performance computing community and related domains. From parallel programming to exascale to quantum computing, the details are here. Read more…

The US Places Seven Additional Chinese Supercomputing Entities on Blacklist

April 8, 2021

As tensions between the U.S. and China continue to simmer, the U.S. government today added seven Chinese supercomputing entities to an economic blacklist. The U Read more…

Habana’s AI Silicon Comes to San Diego Supercomputer Center

April 8, 2021

Habana Labs, an Intel-owned AI company, has partnered with server maker Supermicro to provide high-performance, high-efficiency AI computing in the form of new Read more…

Intel Partners Debut Latest Servers Based on the New Intel Gen 3 ‘Ice Lake’ Xeons

April 7, 2021

Fresh from Intel’s launch of the company’s latest third-generation Xeon Scalable “Ice Lake” processors on April 6 (Tuesday), Intel server partners Cisco, Dell EMC, HPE and Lenovo simultaneously unveiled their first server models built around the latest chips. And though arch-rival AMD may... Read more…

Intel Launches 10nm ‘Ice Lake’ Datacenter CPU with Up to 40 Cores

April 6, 2021

The wait is over. Today Intel officially launched its 10nm datacenter CPU, the third-generation Intel Xeon Scalable processor, codenamed Ice Lake. With up to 40 Read more…

HPE Launches Storage Line Loaded with IBM’s Spectrum Scale File System

April 6, 2021

HPE today launched a new family of storage solutions bundled with IBM’s Spectrum Scale Erasure Code Edition parallel file system (description below) and featu Read more…

RIKEN’s Ongoing COVID Research Includes New Vaccines, New Tests & More

April 6, 2021

RIKEN took the supercomputing world by storm last summer when it launched Fugaku – which became (and remains) the world’s most powerful supercomputer – ne Read more…

CERN Is Betting Big on Exascale

April 1, 2021

The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) involves 23 countries, 15,000 researchers, billions of dollars a year, and the biggest machine in the worl Read more…

AI Systems Summit Keynote: Brace for System Level Heterogeneity Says de Supinski

April 1, 2021

Heterogeneous computing has quickly come to mean packing a couple of CPUs and one-or-many accelerators, mostly GPUs, onto the same node. Today, a one-such-node system has become the standard AI server offered by dozens of vendors. This is not to diminish the many advances... Read more…

Julia Update: Adoption Keeps Climbing; Is It a Python Challenger?

January 13, 2021

The rapid adoption of Julia, the open source, high level programing language with roots at MIT, shows no sign of slowing according to data from Julialang.org. I Read more…

Intel Launches 10nm ‘Ice Lake’ Datacenter CPU with Up to 40 Cores

April 6, 2021

The wait is over. Today Intel officially launched its 10nm datacenter CPU, the third-generation Intel Xeon Scalable processor, codenamed Ice Lake. With up to 40 Read more…

CERN Is Betting Big on Exascale

April 1, 2021

The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) involves 23 countries, 15,000 researchers, billions of dollars a year, and the biggest machine in the worl Read more…

Programming the Soon-to-Be World’s Fastest Supercomputer, Frontier

January 5, 2021

What’s it like designing an app for the world’s fastest supercomputer, set to come online in the United States in 2021? The University of Delaware’s Sunita Chandrasekaran is leading an elite international team in just that task. Chandrasekaran, assistant professor of computer and information sciences, recently was named... Read more…

HPE Launches Storage Line Loaded with IBM’s Spectrum Scale File System

April 6, 2021

HPE today launched a new family of storage solutions bundled with IBM’s Spectrum Scale Erasure Code Edition parallel file system (description below) and featu Read more…

10nm, 7nm, 5nm…. Should the Chip Nanometer Metric Be Replaced?

June 1, 2020

The biggest cool factor in server chips is the nanometer. AMD beating Intel to a CPU built on a 7nm process node* – with 5nm and 3nm on the way – has been i Read more…

Saudi Aramco Unveils Dammam 7, Its New Top Ten Supercomputer

January 21, 2021

By revenue, oil and gas giant Saudi Aramco is one of the largest companies in the world, and it has historically employed commensurate amounts of supercomputing Read more…

Quantum Computer Start-up IonQ Plans IPO via SPAC

March 8, 2021

IonQ, a Maryland-based quantum computing start-up working with ion trap technology, plans to go public via a Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC) merger a Read more…

Leading Solution Providers

Contributors

Can Deep Learning Replace Numerical Weather Prediction?

March 3, 2021

Numerical weather prediction (NWP) is a mainstay of supercomputing. Some of the first applications of the first supercomputers dealt with climate modeling, and Read more…

Livermore’s El Capitan Supercomputer to Debut HPE ‘Rabbit’ Near Node Local Storage

February 18, 2021

A near node local storage innovation called Rabbit factored heavily into Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s decision to select Cray’s proposal for its CORAL-2 machine, the lab’s first exascale-class supercomputer, El Capitan. Details of this new storage technology were revealed... Read more…

New Deep Learning Algorithm Solves Rubik’s Cube

July 25, 2018

Solving (and attempting to solve) Rubik’s Cube has delighted millions of puzzle lovers since 1974 when the cube was invented by Hungarian sculptor and archite Read more…

African Supercomputing Center Inaugurates ‘Toubkal,’ Most Powerful Supercomputer on the Continent

February 25, 2021

Historically, Africa hasn’t exactly been synonymous with supercomputing. There are only a handful of supercomputers on the continent, with few ranking on the Read more…

The History of Supercomputing vs. COVID-19

March 9, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic poses a greater challenge to the high-performance computing community than any before. HPCwire's coverage of the supercomputing response t Read more…

HPE Names Justin Hotard New HPC Chief as Pete Ungaro Departs

March 2, 2021

HPE CEO Antonio Neri announced today (March 2, 2021) the appointment of Justin Hotard as general manager of HPC, mission critical solutions and labs, effective Read more…

Microsoft, HPE Bringing AI, Edge, Cloud to Earth Orbit in Preparation for Mars Missions

February 12, 2021

The International Space Station will soon get a delivery of powerful AI, edge and cloud computing tools from HPE and Microsoft Azure to expand technology experi Read more…

AMD Launches Epyc ‘Milan’ with 19 SKUs for HPC, Enterprise and Hyperscale

March 15, 2021

At a virtual launch event held today (Monday), AMD revealed its third-generation Epyc “Milan” CPU lineup: a set of 19 SKUs -- including the flagship 64-core, 280-watt 7763 part --  aimed at HPC, enterprise and cloud workloads. Notably, the third-gen Epyc Milan chips achieve 19 percent... Read more…

  • arrow
  • Click Here for More Headlines
  • arrow
HPCwire