We have two high performance computers provided by Bull. The theoretical peak compute power of each system is 140 teraflops and 360 teraflops respectively, which can carry out trillions of calculations per second. This is equivalent to about 20,000 standard personal computers.
The Spruce system supplied by SGI, is our latest supercomputer utilising SGIs M-Cell architecture but uses Intel Ivy-Bridge (x86-64) ten-core processors. The theoretical peak computer power of Spruce is 1.8 petaflops.
Visualisation, in the context of high performance supercomputing, involves the interpretation and understanding of results generated by large-scale simulation codes running on our supercomputing platforms.
Future HPC technologies
In the past, HPC technologies only delivered performance based on power-hungry architectural changes like clock frequency or increases in memory. More recently, the focus has changed to providing performance/watt. This is then linked to step gains for scientific applications and the insight they deliver towards new science, within a regime of energy efficiency, environmental balance and cost-effectiveness.
These balanced drivers are much more likely to deliver sustainable HPC performance improvements, and achieve exascale levels of compute performance within the next decade.