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!

Russian and American Scientists Achieve 50% Increase in Data Transmission Speed

September 20, 2018

As high-performance computing becomes increasingly data-intensive and the demand for shorter turnaround times grows, data transfer speed becomes an ever more important bottleneck. Now, in an article published in IEEE Tra Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

IBM to Brand Rescale’s HPC-in-Cloud Platform

September 20, 2018

HPC (or big compute)-in-the-cloud platform provider Rescale has formalized the work it’s been doing in partnership with public cloud vendors by announcing its Powered by Rescale program – with IBM as its first named Read more…

By Doug Black

Democratization of HPC Part 1: Simulation Sheds Light on Building Dispute

September 20, 2018

This is the first of three articles demonstrating the growing acceptance of High Performance Computing especially in new user communities and application areas. Major reasons for this trend are the ongoing improvements i Read more…

By Wolfgang Gentzsch

HPE Extreme Performance Solutions

Introducing the First Integrated System Management Software for HPC Clusters from HPE

How do you manage your complex, growing cluster environments? Answer that big challenge with the new HPC cluster management solution: HPE Performance Cluster Manager. Read more…

IBM Accelerated Insights

Clouds Over the Ocean – a Healthcare Perspective

Advances in precision medicine, genomics, and imaging; the widespread adoption of electronic health records; and the proliferation of medical Internet of Things (IoT) and mobile devices are resulting in an explosion of structured and unstructured healthcare-related data. Read more…

Summit Supercomputer is Already Making its Mark on Science

September 20, 2018

Summit, now the fastest supercomputer in the world, is quickly making its mark in science – five of the six finalists just announced for the prestigious 2018 Gordon Bell Prize used Summit in their work. That’s impres Read more…

By John Russell

Summit Supercomputer is Already Making its Mark on Science

September 20, 2018

Summit, now the fastest supercomputer in the world, is quickly making its mark in science – five of the six finalists just announced for the prestigious 2018 Read more…

By John Russell

House Passes $1.275B National Quantum Initiative

September 17, 2018

Last Thursday the U.S. House of Representatives passed the National Quantum Initiative Act (NQIA) intended to accelerate quantum computing research and developm Read more…

By John Russell

Nvidia Accelerates AI Inference in the Datacenter with T4 GPU

September 14, 2018

Nvidia is upping its game for AI inference in the datacenter with a new platform consisting of an inference accelerator chip--the new Turing-based Tesla T4 GPU- Read more…

By George Leopold

DeepSense Combines HPC and AI to Bolster Canada’s Ocean Economy

September 13, 2018

We often hear scientists say that we know less than 10 percent of the life of the oceans. This week, IBM and a group of Canadian industry and government partner Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Rigetti (and Others) Pursuit of Quantum Advantage

September 11, 2018

Remember ‘quantum supremacy’, the much-touted but little-loved idea that the age of quantum computing would be signaled when quantum computers could tackle Read more…

By John Russell

How FPGAs Accelerate Financial Services Workloads

September 11, 2018

While FSI companies are unlikely, for competitive reasons, to disclose their FPGA strategies, James Reinders offers insights into the case for FPGAs as accelerators for FSI by discussing performance, power, size, latency, jitter and inline processing. Read more…

By James Reinders

Update from Gregory Kurtzer on Singularity’s Push into FS and the Enterprise

September 11, 2018

Container technology is hardly new but it has undergone rapid evolution in the HPC space in recent years to accommodate traditional science workloads and HPC systems requirements. While Docker containers continue to dominate in the enterprise, other variants are becoming important and one alternative with distinctly HPC roots – Singularity – is making an enterprise push targeting advanced scale workload inclusive of HPC. Read more…

By John Russell

At HPC on Wall Street: AI-as-a-Service Accelerates AI Journeys

September 10, 2018

AIaaS – artificial intelligence-as-a-service – is the technology discipline that eases enterprise entry into the mysteries of the AI journey while lowering Read more…

By Doug Black

TACC Wins Next NSF-funded Major Supercomputer

July 30, 2018

The Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) has won the next NSF-funded big supercomputer beating out rivals including the National Center for Supercomputing Ap Read more…

By John Russell

IBM at Hot Chips: What’s Next for Power

August 23, 2018

With processor, memory and networking technologies all racing to fill in for an ailing Moore’s law, the era of the heterogeneous datacenter is well underway, Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Requiem for a Phi: Knights Landing Discontinued

July 25, 2018

On Monday, Intel made public its end of life strategy for the Knights Landing "KNL" Phi product set. The announcement makes official what has already been wide Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

CERN Project Sees Orders-of-Magnitude Speedup with AI Approach

August 14, 2018

An award-winning effort at CERN has demonstrated potential to significantly change how the physics based modeling and simulation communities view machine learni Read more…

By Rob Farber

ORNL Summit Supercomputer Is Officially Here

June 8, 2018

Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) together with IBM and Nvidia celebrated the official unveiling of the Department of Energy (DOE) Summit supercomputer toda Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

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…

By John Russell

AMD’s EPYC Road to Redemption in Six Slides

June 21, 2018

A year ago AMD returned to the server market with its EPYC processor line. The earth didn’t tremble but folks took notice. People remember the Opteron fondly Read more…

By John Russell

Sandia to Take Delivery of World’s Largest Arm System

June 18, 2018

While the enterprise remains circumspect on prospects for Arm servers in the datacenter, the leadership HPC community is taking a bolder, brighter view of the x86 server CPU alternative. Amongst current and planned Arm HPC installations – i.e., the innovative Mont-Blanc project, led by Bull/Atos, the 'Isambard’ Cray XC50 going into the University of Bristol, and commitments from both Japan and France among others -- HPE is announcing that it will be supply the United States National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) with a 2.3 petaflops peak Arm-based system, named Astra. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Leading Solution Providers

SC17 Booth Video Tours Playlist

Altair @ SC17

Altair

AMD @ SC17

AMD

ASRock Rack @ SC17

ASRock Rack

CEJN @ SC17

CEJN

DDN Storage @ SC17

DDN Storage

Huawei @ SC17

Huawei

IBM @ SC17

IBM

IBM Power Systems @ SC17

IBM Power Systems

Intel @ SC17

Intel

Lenovo @ SC17

Lenovo

Mellanox Technologies @ SC17

Mellanox Technologies

Microsoft @ SC17

Microsoft

Penguin Computing @ SC17

Penguin Computing

Pure Storage @ SC17

Pure Storage

Supericro @ SC17

Supericro

Tyan @ SC17

Tyan

Univa @ SC17

Univa

MLPerf – Will New Machine Learning Benchmark Help Propel AI Forward?

May 2, 2018

Let the AI benchmarking wars begin. Today, a diverse group from academia and industry – Google, Baidu, Intel, AMD, Harvard, and Stanford among them – releas Read more…

By John Russell

House Passes $1.275B National Quantum Initiative

September 17, 2018

Last Thursday the U.S. House of Representatives passed the National Quantum Initiative Act (NQIA) intended to accelerate quantum computing research and developm Read more…

By John Russell

D-Wave Breaks New Ground in Quantum Simulation

July 16, 2018

Last Friday D-Wave scientists and colleagues published work in Science which they say represents the first fulfillment of Richard Feynman’s 1982 notion that Read more…

By John Russell

Intel Pledges First Commercial Nervana Product ‘Spring Crest’ in 2019

May 24, 2018

At its AI developer conference in San Francisco yesterday, Intel embraced a holistic approach to AI and showed off a broad AI portfolio that includes Xeon processors, Movidius technologies, FPGAs and Intel’s Nervana Neural Network Processors (NNPs), based on the technology it acquired in 2016. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Intel Announces Cooper Lake, Advances AI Strategy

August 9, 2018

Intel's chief datacenter exec Navin Shenoy kicked off the company's Data-Centric Innovation Summit Wednesday, the day-long program devoted to Intel's datacenter Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

TACC’s ‘Frontera’ Supercomputer Expands Horizon for Extreme-Scale Science

August 29, 2018

The National Science Foundation and the Texas Advanced Computing Center announced today that a new system, called Frontera, will overtake Stampede 2 as the fast Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

GPUs Power Five of World’s Top Seven Supercomputers

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 proc Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

The Machine Learning Hype Cycle and HPC

June 14, 2018

Like many other HPC professionals I’m following the hype cycle around machine learning/deep learning with interest. I subscribe to the view that we’re probably approaching the ‘peak of inflated expectation’ but not quite yet starting the descent into the ‘trough of disillusionment. This still raises the probability that... Read more…

By Dairsie Latimer

  • arrow
  • Click Here for More Headlines
  • arrow
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!
Share This