CINES (Centre Informatique National de l’Enseignement Supérieur, in Montpellier) will be the location for the new Bull supercomputer which GENCI has just acquired. Poetically named OCCIGEN, it should be deployed in September and put into production at the beginning of 2015. As is often the case today, an intermediate testing and stabilization period should result in the exclusive use of the machine for a number of large scientific simulations (the list of which has not been disclosed yet).
Naturally, OCCIGEN features the latest high performance computing technologies – among those that left the ever-growing realm of vaporware and become actually available. Besides 200 TB of memory, Its 2,106 dual-socket nodes will host 12-core Haswell Xeons clocked at 2.6 GHz, for a total of 50,544 cores delivering 2.1 Pflops peak. Eight additional front-end nodes will also be dedicated to connections and file sharing. In this area, system designers have chosen InfiniBand FDR-14 interconnects (in Fat Tree topology), and equipped the machine with an I/O system capable of storing up to 5.1 PB on disks with a nominal throughput of over 100 GB/s. Last, on the cooling side, OCCIGEN will count as yet another big system to benefit from Bull’s warm water technology for an excellent theoretical PUE of less than 1.1.
The arrival of this brings France’s national computing power beyond 5 Pflops, allowing the country to continue to claim scientific excellence. As per the June list, the machine would still make it to the Top 20 of the Top500. It’s unclear however, if this will still be the case in November. But, after all, who said that was so important?
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