Cerebras Systems Announces 130x Performance Improvement on Key Nuclear Energy Simulation over Nvidia A100 GPUs

November 13, 2023

SUNNYVALE, Calif., Nov. 13, 2023 — Cerebras Systems today announced the achievement of a 130x speedup over Nvidia A100 GPUs on a key nuclear energy HPC simulation kernel, developed by researchers at Argonne National Laboratory. This result demonstrates the performance and versatility of the Cerebras Wafer-Scale Engine (WSE-2) and ensures that the U.S. continues to be the global leader in supercomputing for energy and defense applications.

Monte Carlo particle transport is a major focus in the field of HPC as it provides high fidelity simulation of radiation transport and is vital to fission and fusion reactor designs. In this research collaboration, a Cerebras CS-2 system dramatically outperformed a highly optimized GPU implementation in the most demanding portion of the Monte Carlo neutron particle transport algorithm – the macroscopic cross section lookup kernel. This kernel represents the most computationally intensive portion of the full simulation, accounting for up to 85% of the total runtime for many nuclear energy applications. This work further validates Argonne’s ALCF AI Testbed program, which aims to bring AI accelerators to the forefront of U.S. supercomputing infrastructure, exploring capabilities beyond what is achievable with GPUs.

“I’ve implemented this kernel in a half dozen different programming models and have run it on just about every HPC architecture over the last decade,” said John R. Tramm, Assistant Computational Scientist, Argonne National Laboratory. “The performance numbers we were able to get out of the Cerebras machine impressed our team – a clear advancement over what has been possible on CPU or GPU architectures to-date. Our team’s work adds to growing evidence that AI accelerators have serious potential to disrupt GPU dominance in the field of HPC simulation.”

Monte Carlo neutron particle transport provides high fidelity simulation of radiation transport, which is a critical component of fission and fusion reactor design. Within this algorithm, the macroscopic cross section lookup kernel assembles statistical distribution data used to generate random samples for a particle’s behavior as it moves through a simulated geometry and interacts with various materials. ANL scientists implemented an optimized version of the macroscopic cross-section lookup kernel using the Cerebras SDK and the CSL programming language. The implementation took advantage of Cerebras CS-2’s wafer scale architecture of up to 850,000 cores and 40GB of on-chip SRAM which provided a combination of extreme bandwidth and low latency – an ideal match for Monte Carlo particle simulations. This research also validates the ability of external researchers to develop their own HPC applications for the Cerebras architecture, unlocking new levels of performance on a wide variety of computational problems.

“These published results highlight not only the incredible performance of the CS-2, but also its architectural efficiency,” said Andrew Feldman, CEO and co-founder of Cerebras Systems. “The Cerebras CS-2 system, powered by the WSE-2 processor, has 48x more transistors than the A100 but achieved a 130x speedup, showing a 2.7x gain in architectural efficiency for a problem that is widely optimized for GPUs.”

Moreover, the Cerebras CS-2 demonstrated strong scaling, meaning it achieved high performance on both small- and large-scale simulations. The researchers noted that in smaller scale simulations, no amount of GPUs working in parallel would be able to match the performance of a single CS-2.

The Cerebras CS-2, powered by the WSE-2, is purpose-built for generative AI and scientific applications. It has delivered remarkable results, often characterized as “100x” improvements in scientific computing. Notably, in a multi-dimensional seismic processing project conducted by the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), a cluster of 48 CS-2s achieved performance comparable to the world’s fastest supercomputer. Similarly, researchers at the National Energy Technology Laboratory used the CS-2 to perform computational fluid dynamics a staggering 470 times faster than its Joule Supercomputer. Additionally at TotalEnergies, the CS-2 accelerated stencil computations by an impressive 228 times when compared to a GPU-based solution.

To read the full paper titled “Efficient Algorithms for Monte Carlo Particle Transport on AI Accelerator Hardware,” please visit https://arxiv.org/abs/2311.01739.

About Cerebras Systems

Cerebras Systems is a team of pioneering deep learning researchers, computer architects, and solutions specialists of all types. We have come together to bring generative AI to enterprises and organizations of all sizes around the world. Our flagship product, the CS-2 system, powered by WSE-2, the world’s largest and fastest AI processor, makes training large models simple and easy, by avoiding the complexity of distributed computing. Our software tools simplify the deployment and training process, providing deep insights and ensuring best in class accuracy. Through our team of world-class ML researchers and practitioners who bring decades of experience developing and deploying the most advanced AI models, we help our customers stay on the cutting edge of AI. Cerebras solutions are available in the cloud, through the Cerebras AI Model Studio or on premise. For further information, visit https://www.cerebras.net.


Source: Cerebras Systems

Subscribe to HPCwire's Weekly Update!

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

Natcast/NSTC Issues Roadmap to Implement CHIPS and Science Act

May 29, 2024

Yesterday, CHIPS for America and Natcast, the operator of the National Semiconductor Technology Center (NSTC), released a roadmap of early steps for implementing portions of the ambitious $5 billion program. Natcast is t Read more…

Scientists Use GenAI to Uncover New Insights in Materials Science

May 29, 2024

With the help of generative AI, researchers from MIT and the University of Basel in Switzerland have developed a new machine-learning framework that can help uncover new insights about materials science. The findings of Read more…

Microsoft’s ARM-based CPU Cobalt will Support Windows 11 in the Cloud

May 29, 2024

Microsoft's ARM-based CPU, called Cobalt, is now available in the cloud for public consumption. Cobalt is Microsoft's first homegrown CPU, which was first announced six months ago. The cloud-based Cobalt VMs will support Read more…

2024 Winter Classic Finale! Gala Awards Ceremony

May 28, 2024

We wrapped up the competition with our traditional Gala Awards Ceremony. This was an exciting show, given that only 40 points or so separated first place from fifth place after the Google GROMACS Challenge and heading in Read more…

IBM Makes a Push Towards Open-Source Services, Announces New watsonx Updates

May 28, 2024

Today, IBM declared that it is releasing a number of noteworthy changes to its watsonx platform, with the goal of increasing the openness, affordability, and flexibility of the platform’s AI capabilities. Announced Read more…

ISC 2024 Takeaways: Love for Top500, Extending HPC Systems, and Media Bashing

May 23, 2024

The ISC High Performance show is typically about time-to-science, but breakout sessions also focused on Europe's tech sovereignty, server infrastructure, storage, throughput, and new computing technologies. This round Read more…

Scientists Use GenAI to Uncover New Insights in Materials Science

May 29, 2024

With the help of generative AI, researchers from MIT and the University of Basel in Switzerland have developed a new machine-learning framework that can help un Read more…

watsonx

IBM Makes a Push Towards Open-Source Services, Announces New watsonx Updates

May 28, 2024

Today, IBM declared that it is releasing a number of noteworthy changes to its watsonx platform, with the goal of increasing the openness, affordability, and fl Read more…

ISC 2024 Takeaways: Love for Top500, Extending HPC Systems, and Media Bashing

May 23, 2024

The ISC High Performance show is typically about time-to-science, but breakout sessions also focused on Europe's tech sovereignty, server infrastructure, storag Read more…

ISC 2024 — A Few Quantum Gems and Slides from a Packed QC Agenda

May 22, 2024

If you were looking for quantum computing content, ISC 2024 was a good place to be last week — there were around 20 quantum computing related sessions. QC eve Read more…

Atos Outlines Plans to Get Acquired, and a Path Forward

May 21, 2024

Atos – via its subsidiary Eviden – is the second major supercomputer maker outside of HPE, while others have largely dropped out. The lack of integrators and Atos' financial turmoil have the HPC market worried. If Atos goes under, HPE will be the only major option for building large-scale systems. Read more…

Google Announces Sixth-generation AI Chip, a TPU Called Trillium

May 17, 2024

On Tuesday May 14th, Google announced its sixth-generation TPU (tensor processing unit) called Trillium.  The chip, essentially a TPU v6, is the company's l Read more…

Europe’s Race towards Quantum-HPC Integration and Quantum Advantage

May 16, 2024

What an interesting panel, Quantum Advantage — Where are We and What is Needed? While the panelists looked slightly weary — their’s was, after all, one of Read more…

The Future of AI in Science

May 15, 2024

AI is one of the most transformative and valuable scientific tools ever developed. By harnessing vast amounts of data and computational power, AI systems can un Read more…

Synopsys Eats Ansys: Does HPC Get Indigestion?

February 8, 2024

Recently, it was announced that Synopsys is buying HPC tool developer Ansys. Started in Pittsburgh, Pa., in 1970 as Swanson Analysis Systems, Inc. (SASI) by John Swanson (and eventually renamed), Ansys serves the CAE (Computer Aided Engineering)/multiphysics engineering simulation market. Read more…

Nvidia H100: Are 550,000 GPUs Enough for This Year?

August 17, 2023

The GPU Squeeze continues to place a premium on Nvidia H100 GPUs. In a recent Financial Times article, Nvidia reports that it expects to ship 550,000 of its lat Read more…

Comparing NVIDIA A100 and NVIDIA L40S: Which GPU is Ideal for AI and Graphics-Intensive Workloads?

October 30, 2023

With long lead times for the NVIDIA H100 and A100 GPUs, many organizations are looking at the new NVIDIA L40S GPU, which it’s a new GPU optimized for AI and g Read more…

Atos Outlines Plans to Get Acquired, and a Path Forward

May 21, 2024

Atos – via its subsidiary Eviden – is the second major supercomputer maker outside of HPE, while others have largely dropped out. The lack of integrators and Atos' financial turmoil have the HPC market worried. If Atos goes under, HPE will be the only major option for building large-scale systems. Read more…

Choosing the Right GPU for LLM Inference and Training

December 11, 2023

Accelerating the training and inference processes of deep learning models is crucial for unleashing their true potential and NVIDIA GPUs have emerged as a game- Read more…

Nvidia’s New Blackwell GPU Can Train AI Models with Trillions of Parameters

March 18, 2024

Nvidia's latest and fastest GPU, codenamed Blackwell, is here and will underpin the company's AI plans this year. The chip offers performance improvements from Read more…

Some Reasons Why Aurora Didn’t Take First Place in the Top500 List

May 15, 2024

The makers of the Aurora supercomputer, which is housed at the Argonne National Laboratory, gave some reasons why the system didn't make the top spot on the Top Read more…

AMD MI3000A

How AMD May Get Across the CUDA Moat

October 5, 2023

When discussing GenAI, the term "GPU" almost always enters the conversation and the topic often moves toward performance and access. Interestingly, the word "GPU" is assumed to mean "Nvidia" products. (As an aside, the popular Nvidia hardware used in GenAI are not technically... Read more…

Leading Solution Providers

Contributors

The GenAI Datacenter Squeeze Is Here

February 1, 2024

The immediate effect of the GenAI GPU Squeeze was to reduce availability, either direct purchase or cloud access, increase cost, and push demand through the roof. A secondary issue has been developing over the last several years. Even though your organization secured several racks... Read more…

The NASA Black Hole Plunge

May 7, 2024

We have all thought about it. No one has done it, but now, thanks to HPC, we see what it looks like. Hold on to your feet because NASA has released videos of wh Read more…

Shutterstock 1285747942

AMD’s Horsepower-packed MI300X GPU Beats Nvidia’s Upcoming H200

December 7, 2023

AMD and Nvidia are locked in an AI performance battle – much like the gaming GPU performance clash the companies have waged for decades. AMD has claimed it Read more…

Intel Plans Falcon Shores 2 GPU Supercomputing Chip for 2026  

August 8, 2023

Intel is planning to onboard a new version of the Falcon Shores chip in 2026, which is code-named Falcon Shores 2. The new product was announced by CEO Pat Gel Read more…

GenAI Having Major Impact on Data Culture, Survey Says

February 21, 2024

While 2023 was the year of GenAI, the adoption rates for GenAI did not match expectations. Most organizations are continuing to invest in GenAI but are yet to Read more…

Eyes on the Quantum Prize – D-Wave Says its Time is Now

January 30, 2024

Early quantum computing pioneer D-Wave again asserted – that at least for D-Wave – the commercial quantum era has begun. Speaking at its first in-person Ana Read more…

Q&A with Nvidia’s Chief of DGX Systems on the DGX-GB200 Rack-scale System

March 27, 2024

Pictures of Nvidia's new flagship mega-server, the DGX GB200, on the GTC show floor got favorable reactions on social media for the sheer amount of computing po Read more…

How the Chip Industry is Helping a Battery Company

May 8, 2024

Chip companies, once seen as engineering pure plays, are now at the center of geopolitical intrigue. Chip manufacturing firms, especially TSMC and Intel, have b Read more…

  • arrow
  • Click Here for More Headlines
  • arrow
HPCwire