Indiana University has been awarded a $10 million NSF grant to build ‘Jetstream 2,’ a cloud computing system that will provide 8 aggregate petaflops of computing capability in support of data analysis and AI workloads for Indiana University and across the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE). On track to be deployed later this year at IU and four partner sites, Jetstream 2 will be supplied by Dell, and powered by AMD next-generation Epyc “Milan” CPUs and Nvidia A100 GPUs.
Jetstream 2 follows up on the original Jetstream infrastructure, launched in 2015 as NSF’s first production science and engineering research cloud system. The mission of Jetstream will continue: improving HPC access to the so-called long tail of science, supporting domain scientists and engineers who typically have limited access to HPC resources and limited expertise.
The Jetstream project is part of IU’s Pervasive Technology Institute and led by UITS Research Technologies with participation from the Cyberinfrastructure Integration Research Center and the Center for Applied Cybersecurity Research. Other named partners include the University of Arizona, Johns Hopkins University, and the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research.
Like the original Jetstream, Jetstream 2 will be distributed over multiple sites. The primary system will be located at Indiana University, and four smaller systems will be installed at partnering institutions: Arizona State University, Cornell University, the University of Hawai’i, and the Texas Advanced Computing Center. Vendor partner Dell will supply the computing clusters with AMD and Nvidia technology and 18.5 petabytes of storage. The infrastructure is a significant expansion on the original Jetstream, which provides about 500 teraflops of computing performance and 2 petabytes of block and object storage.
In addition to the NSF system award of $10 million, IU expects to receive an additional $10 million in NSF funding to build and operate Jetstream 2 over five years. The official start date for the project is October 1, 2020.
“We intend Jetstream 2 to be a democratizing force within the NSF ecosystem, allowing researchers and educators access to cutting-edge resources regardless of project scale,” said David Y. Hancock, Jetstream 2 principal investigator and director for Advanced Cyberinfrastructure in IU’s University Information Technology Services. “‘AI for everyone’ is a term we’ve coined to embrace that idea. Through the use of virtual infrastructure, we will be able to provide more access to high-end technologies to enable deep learning and artificial intelligence techniques.”
“Jetstream 2 is a system that will be easy to expand and reconfigure, and capable of supporting diverse modes of on-demand access and use,” notes the NSF award abstract. The system’s virtual GPU capabilities and broad reach through the five partner sites are cited as keys to building skills and experience across student populations of all disciplines and developing a future STEM workforce.
“The Jetstream team has been at the forefront of training the research community to transition from batch computing methods to adopt cloud-style usage,” the notice states. “Jetstream 2 will continue this path and will ease the transition between academic and commercial cloud computing. Some of the advanced features include push-button virtual clusters, advanced high-availability science gateways services (including commercial cloud integration), federated authentication for JupyterHubs, bare metal and virtualization within the same system through programmable CI, support for on-demand data intensive workloads in addition to on-demand computation, high-performance software-defined storage, and advanced multi-platform orchestration capabilities.”
“Jetstream 2 builds on the tremendous success of the original Jetstream system at IU and with our partners,” said Brad Wheeler, IU vice president for IT. “It bundles computation, software, and access to storage for individuals and teams of researchers who span hundreds of areas of research and who work at the frontiers of scientific inquiry. It further expands IU’s many technology and research partnerships across the nation.”
With nearly $14 million in NSF backing under the original 2014 award, the Jetstream project has supported thousands of U.S. researchers and is being leveraged in the fight against the global coronavirus pandemic as part of the COVID-19 HPC Consortium.
For more information and comments from stakeholders, see the IU press release.