ISC 2014 Student Cluster Challenge: EPCC Record-Breaking Cluster

The University of Edinburgh’s entry into the ISC 2014 Student Cluster Competition, EPCC, has been awarded first place in the LINPACK test. The EPCC team harnessed Boston’s HPC cluster to smash the 10Tflop mark for the first time – shattering the previous record of 9.27Tflops set by students at ASC14 earlier this month. The team recorded a score of 10.14Tflops producing 3.38 Tflops/kW which would achieve a rank of #4 in the Green500, a list of the most energy efficient supercomputers in the world.

 

Members:Chenhui Quan, Georgios Iniatis, Xu Guo, Emmanouil Farsarakis, Konstantinos MouzakitisPhoto Courtesty:  HPC Advisory Council
Members: Chenhui Quan, Georgios Iniatis, Xu Guo,
Emmanouil Farsarakis, Konstantinos Mouzakitis
Photo Courtesy: HPC Advisory Council

 

This achievement was made possible thanks to the provisioning of a high performance, liquid cooled GPU cluster by Boston. The system consisted on four 1U Supermicro servers, each comprising of two Intel® Xeon™ ‘Ivy Bridge’ processors and two NVIDIA® K40 Tesla GPUs, and Mellanox FDR 56Gb/s InfiniBand adapters, switches and cables.

 

Mellanox FDR 56Gb/s InfiniBand adapters, switches, software and cables optimize server and storage performance, providing superior performance and low-latency with leading power-efficiency. Liquid cooling technology by CoolIT Systems was used in order to cool the CPUs and, for the first time, the NVIDIA GPUs; resulting in a lower overall power due to cooling optimisations across the server.

 

We applaud the EPCC team on its record-breaking LINPACK performance by taking advantage of Mellanox’s FDR 56Gb/s InfiniBand solutions with its RDMA enhancements for better GPU efficiency, the student team from EPCC was able to break the 10TFLOP barrier with a system that consumed lower than 3KW.

 

Having participated in the event before, we knew that we had to raise the bar,” said David Power, head of HPC at Boston Limited. “We implemented liquid cooling technology in order to improve the power efficiency and performance of the NVIDIA K40s. This is another industry first for Boston demonstrating innovation, and driving efficiency in our solutions for customers.

Scot Schultz
Author: Scot Schultz is a HPC technology specialist with broad knowledge in operating systems, high speed interconnects and processor technologies. Prior to joining Mellanox, he spent the past 17 years at AMD in various engineering and leadership roles, most recently in strategic HPC technology ecosystem enablement. Scot was also instrumental with the growth and development of the Open Fabrics Alliance as co-chair of the board of directors. Scot currently maintains his role as Director of Educational Outreach, founding member of the HPC Advisory Council and of various other industry organizations. Follow him on Twitter: @ScotSchultz

About Scot Schultz

Scot Schultz is a HPC technology specialist with broad knowledge in operating systems, high speed interconnects and processor technologies. Joining the Mellanox team in March 2013 as Director of HPC and Technical Computing, Schultz is 25-year veteran of the computing industry. Prior to joining Mellanox, he spent the past 17 years at AMD in various engineering and leadership roles, most recently in strategic HPC technology ecosystem enablement. Scot was also instrumental with the growth and development of the Open Fabrics Alliance as co-chair of the board of directors. Scot currently maintains his role as Director of Educational Outreach, founding member of the HPC Advisory Council and of various other industry organizations. Follow him on Twitter: https://twitter.com/scotschultz