TSUBAME3.01 Set To Be Japan’s Largest Supercomputer

Equipped with over 2,000 of the latest NVIDIA GPUs, TSUBAME3.0 will give Japan an additional 47.2 petaFLOPS of supercomputing power.

AsianScientist (Mar. 1, 2017) – The Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) Global Scientific Information and Computing Center (GSIC) has begun development and construction of a next-generation supercomputer called TSUBAME3.0. When it begins operations in the summer of 2017, TSUBAME3.01 will be Japan’s most powerful supercomputer.

The theoretical performance of the TSUBAME3.0 is 47.2 petaFLOPS in 16-bit half precision mode or above, and once the new TSUBAME3.0 is operating alongside the current TSUBAME2.5, Tokyo Tech GSIC will be able to provide a total computation performance of 64.3 petaFLOPS in half precision mode or above, making it the largest supercomputer center in Japan.

The majority of scientific calculation requires 64-bit double precision, however, artificial intelligence (AI) and Big Data processing can be performed at 16-bit half precision, and the TSUBAME3.0 is expected to be widely used in these fields where demand is continuing to increase.

Since the TSUBAME2.0 and 2.5 started operations in November 2010 as the fastest supercomputers in Japan, these computers have become “supercomputers for everyone” and have significantly contributed to industry-academia-government research and development both in Japan and overseas. These research results and the experience gained through operating TSUBAME2.0 and 2.5, and the energy-saving supercomputer TSUBAME-KFC2 were all applied in the design process for TSUBAME3.0.

As a result of Japanese government procurement for the development of TSUBAME3.0, SGI Japan, Ltd. (SGI) was awarded the contract to work on the project. Tokyo Tech is developing TSUBAME3.0 in partnership with SGI and NVIDIA, as well as other companies.

The TSUBAME series feature the most recent NVIDIA GPUs available at the time, namely Tesla for TSUBAME1.2, Fermi for TSUBAME2.0, and Kepler for TSUBAME2.5. The upcoming TSUBAME3.0 will feature the fourth-generation Pascal GPU to ensure high compatibility. TSUBAME3.0 will contain 2,160 GPUs, making a total of 6,720 GPUs in operation at GSIC once operating alongside TSUBAME2.5 and TSUBAME-KFC.

Using the latest GPUs enables improved performance and energy efficiency as well as higher speed and larger capacity storage. The overall computation speed and capacity has also been improved through the NVMe-compatible, high-speed 1.08 PB SSDs on the computation nodes; resulting in significant advances in high-speed processing for big data applications. TSUBAME3.0 also incorporates a variety of cloud technologies, including virtualization, and is expected to become the most advanced science cloud in Japan.

“Artificial intelligence is rapidly becoming a key application for supercomputing,” said Mr. Ian Buck, vice president and general manager of Accelerated Computing at NVIDIA. “NVIDIA’s GPU computing platform merges AI with HPC, accelerating computation so that scientists and researchers can tackle once unsolvable problems.”

TSUBAME3.0 has the theoretical performance of 12.15 petaFLOPS in double precision mode (enabling calculation of 12,150 trillion floating point numbers/second); performance that is set to exceed the K supercomputer. In single precision mode, the TSUBAME3.0 performs at 24.3 petaFLOPS, and in half precision mode this increases to 47.2 petaFLOPS.

The computational power of TSUBAME3.0 will not only be used for education and cutting-edge research within the TokyoTech but will continue to serve as “supercomputing for everyone” through the Joint Usage/Research Center for Interdisciplinary Large-scale Information Infrastructures (JHPCN) and the High Performance Computing Infrastructure (HPCI), two leading information bases for Japan’s top universities, and GSIC’s own TSUBAME Joint Usage Service.


Source: Tokyo Institute of Technology.
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