5.34 petaflop SGI monster forecast at US National Center for Atmospheric Research

SGI scores deal for new 'Cheyenne' super

NCAR rendering of a thunderstorm
Yellowstone 3D rendering of a thunderstorm. Image: NCAR

SGI and partner DataDirect Networks will spend 2016 beating a path to America's National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), which named them to deliver its next system in 2017.

The iron will replace its 1.5 petaflop Yellowstone with an Intel Xeon-based 5.34 petaflop thumper to improve NCAR's climate and weather modelling.

As The Register's HPC sister publication The Next Platform notes, during commissioning, the new machine, dubbed "Cheyenne," will run alongside Yellowstone.

The 4,032-node, 313 TB of memory machine will run SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and use Mellanox EDR InfiniBand for the interconnect. At launch it will have 20 PB of storage, aggregate I/O of 200 Gbps, and the storage system will run on Red Hat Linux using the IBM GPFS (general parallel file system).

DataDirect Networks' role in the contract will be to build Cheyenne's file system and data storage, which will be integrated into NCAR's existing GLADE filesystem.

NCAR's Anke Kamrath told The Next Platform Cheyenne will use an Intel Xeon E5 processor to be released this year, with 18 cores per socket – a total in excess of 145,000 cores.

NCAR reckons Cheyenne will triple the energy efficiency of Yellowstone, delivering 3 billion calculations per second, per watt.

Workloads for Cheyenne will include forecasts of streamflows a year in advance; severe weather warnings; solar irradiance for large-scale solar power facilities; more granular regional climate change predictions; decadal climate forecasts; as well as air quality, subsurface flows, and solar storms.

More at The Next Platform here. ®

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