Nine Department of Energy Supercomputers Designed by Penguin Computing Appear in the Top 500 List, Demonstrating Value, Performance of OCP
November 2018 – Nine supercomputers designed and built by Penguin Computing were ranked in the TOP500 List, as announced at SC18 in Dallas, Texas.
All nine supercomputers are built on the Tundra® Extreme Scale computing platform using Open Compute Project (OCP) specifications. In addition, all nine supercomputers are deployed in U.S. national labs as part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Commodity Technology Systems-1 (CTS-1) contract to support the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) to ensure nuclear stockpile stewardship in compliance with the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) between the U.S. and the former Soviet Union, exemplifying how OCP-based technology can give organizations both value and performance.
As part of the DOE’s Advanced Simulation and Computing (ASC) program, these supercomputers provide simulation-based confidence in the nuclear stockpile, an alternative to explosive test-based confidence. The ASC integrates the work of three defense programs laboratories (Los Alamos National Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and Sandia National Laboratories) and university researchers nationally into a coordinated program administered by NNSA.
CTS-1 clusters support NNSA’s Life Extension Program and investigations into technical issues related to aging weapons systems, efforts critical to ensuring the safety security and reliability of the nuclear weapons in the stockpile as they age well beyond their intended deployment life.
OCP includes the entire ecosystem of infrastructure technologies, including data center, high-performance computing (HPC), and artificial intelligence (AI) components. OCP vendors share design specifications so that each can build efficient, interoperable infrastructure components or even full system, as is the case with vendors like Penguin Computing. This approach drives down costs while providing robust performance. Node costs are 15-20% less and reliability is improved compared to 19-inch servers. Service is from the front, enabling field replaceable systems, making maintenance simpler and less costly.
There are thousands of supported and tested open operating systems, software stacks, networking stacks and other software to choose from, which all cost less than proprietary software. The design specifications give you the flexibility of using different hardware technologies, such as X86, ARM, storage, and, of course SDx.
This also means you no longer have to replace the whole system based on the lifecycle of the shortest-lived component. Instead, you replace or upgrade the modular components and keep your investment in the overall system.