A peek at 10 Petaflops

HPC Wire’s mysterious High-end Crusader writes on the Petaflop future of HPC and the failure of traditional architectures to get us there:
“This sweet spot is constantly evolving; it might be anywhere from a few tens to a few hundreds of sustained TFs/s in 2011. Pseudo-commercial super clusters are red herrings that obscure this clear picture. Be this as it may, only a handful of systems are scaling ambitiously. The reference machine is, of course, Japan’s Keisoku Keisanki, which is running in the Riken lab today at 2 PFs/s. This is a machine whose heroic _useful_ scalability is due to brilliantly engineered integration of heterogeneous processors. Here is the break down of its 10 PFs/s. First, 1.5 PFs/s comes from (presumably out-of-order) scalar processors. Then, there is another 0.5 PFs/s coming from vector processors. Finally, the heavy lifting is done by “Grape-7″, which is an array of identical special-purpose devices (SPD) specially optimized for finite-element analysis. This SPD array makes up the remaining 8 PFs/s.” Full Story


About Rich
FlexRex began his life as a cartoon character I created a Sun Microsystems. As the world's first "fictional blogger," he appeared in numerous parody films that made fun of the whole work-from-home thing. Somewhere along the line, the Sun IT department adopted FlexRex as their spokesman in a half-dozen security awareness films for employees. So when I left Sun recently, I started FlexRex Communications, a Marketing company in Portland, Oregon.

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