lunes, 30 de enero de 2012

Contributions of the week

During this week I made some contributions to the wiki we share in the class.

First I wrote a little introduction with a definition of a supercomputer

I also added information to the applications part, where I explained how they are used in real life in order to give them an idea and to help them know what to do with the project.

At the end of the wiki, I added a place where people can write useful links that may help us to do a better investigation and to improve the project. I only wrote two but the idea is that more people write more links

Next week I will be posting more contributions. I want to make more contributions than I did this week.I hope you find this useful

Some applications of supercomputers

With the help of supercomputers, scientists now can study a wide variety of complex problems. Supercomputers have a lot of applications almost in any area:

Computer modeling and simulation

One of the applications is related to computer modeling and simulation. It can be used to speed up extremely slow processes in order to predict problems. Supercomputers can also help in molecular dynamics simulations.

NASA uses supercomputers to perform simulations:

A team of modeling and simulation experts in the NASA Advanced Supercomputing (NAS) Division is performing advanced aerodynamic simulations that supply critical design performance data more efficiently and accurately than ever before. Using NASA-developed computational fluid dynamics (CFD) codes and supercomputers at the NAS facility, the team is modeling new launch vehicle designs and computing the detailed aerodynamic flows, forces, and interactions that could affect flight performance and safety during launch (1)

Weather forecasting

They can also be useful in weather forecasting, in order to understand the internal conditions that bring about severe weather phenomena.
Also researchers may use them to conduct real-time weather predictions and it can make weather modeling more accurate.

Environmental Studies

It can also be helpful to improve the realism of environmental models. A supercomputer can also help to investigate the behaviour of things that might be too small to examine by any physical means, scientists can also use it to make three dimensional models of chemical compounds or microscopical living things.

Cloud Computing

Amazon has one of the world’s fastest supercomputers, but it’s in the cloud, it is not stored in the way other supercomputers are in a huge room filled with processors and storage. It may not replace the original supercomputers because its performance is not the same and it is slower but it is a very good option for some researchers.

As I said before, supercomputers can also perform many other tasks that can help scientists' investigations easier and may contribute to the evolution of science and technology advances



During this week I gathered some information related to the use of supercomputers and what tasks they are capable to perform.

We all know what a microcomputer is, most of us have one. A Supercomputer is much more powerfull than a microcomputer. Supercomputers are the fastest type of computers that exist, they are build in order to perform several tasks that require immense amounts of calculations (quantum physics, weather forecasting, climate research, oli and gas exploration, as well as molecular modelling, it can also perform simulations such as airplanes in wind tunnels simulations or the detonation of nuclear weapons, structural analysis, computational fluid dynamics, chemistry, electronic design, among many other uses

Now I’m going to describe some of the most powerfull computers of the world and what are they used for. I gathered this information from top 500. This page contains information about the top 500 supercomputers. Here I’m only going to mention three.

1. The K computer is ranked the world's fastest supercomputer, with a rating of almost 10 petaflops. It uses 88,128 2.0GHz 8-core SPARC64 VIIIfx processors packed in 864 cabinets, for a total of 705,024 cores, manufactured by Fujitsu with 45 nm CMOS technology. It has a memory of 1410048 Gb, and a power of 12659.89 Kw.

2. The Tianhe-1 system is composed of 112 computer cabinets, 12 storage cabinets, 6 communications cabinets, and 8 I/O cabinets. Each computer cabinet is composed of four frames, with each frame containing eight blades, plus a 16-port switching board. Each blade is composed of two computer nodes, with each computer node containing two Xeon X5670 6-core processors and one Nvidia M2050 GPU processor. The system has 3584 total blades containing 7168 GPUs, and 14,336 CPUs, managed by the SLURM job scheduler.The total disk storage of the systems is 2 Petabytes implemented as a Lustre clustered file system,and the total memory size of the system is 262 Terabytes.

3. The Jaguar is manufactured by Cray Inc. It has a peak performance of just over 1,750 teraflops (1.75 petaflops). It has 224,256 x86-based AMD Opteron processor cores. Jaguar is a Cray XT5 system, a development from the Cray XT4 supercomputer.
aguar's XT5 partition contains 18,688 compute nodes in addition to dedicated login/service nodes. Each XT5 compute node contains dual hex-core AMD Opteron 2435 (Istanbul) processors and 16 GB of memory. Jaguar's XT4 partition contains 7,832 compute nodes in addition to dedicated login/service nodes. Each XT4 compute node contains a quad-core AMD Opteron 1354 (Budapest) processor and 8 GB of memory. Total combined memory amounts to over 360 terabytes (TB).

If you want to know more about this type of computers you may want to check this page.