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Deploying cloud HPC for trackside advantage

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Manor Racing is partnering with San Francisco-based cloud computing provider Rescale, for its 2016 FIA Formula 1 World Championship challenge.

Manor Racing will use Rescale’s cloud high-performance computing (HPC) platform to enable trackside simulation for the team. Working in tandem with Manor Racing’s existing race strategy simulation software, the Rescale cloud HPC platform will enable its engineers to evaluate thousands of simulations and strategies, enabling the team to make better strategic decisions during a Grand Prix weekend.

Dave Ryan, racing director, said: ‘We’re aiming for steady progress up the grid in the seasons ahead and our new partnership with Rescale is key to helping us engineer that transformation.’

Cloud HPC is a key technology for Manor Racing because it means that they can access modeling and simulation data from trackside for the first time, a huge advantage when previously these simulations would have to stop once the team has no access to workstations or clusters on which to perform the simulation.

Ryan continued: ‘It’s all about optimisation and the areas of mathematical modelling and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) can help provide rapid growth and constant evolution. Evaluating results in real-time using Rescale’s cloud HPC platform gives us a real breakthrough in our simulation capabilities, and without adding weight to our trackside infrastructure.’

The whole process is executed from a laptop web browser by Rescale’s massively scalable cloud infrastructure and computer environment. Rescale CEO Joris Poort said: ‘Using the Rescale platform requires zero IT footprint trackside. With just a laptop and an internet connection, Manor Racing has a global computer platform at their fingertips to provide a strong competitive edge in simulation.’

Poort also commented on the advantage that this technology can provide in real-time during races, due to the high throughput and performance delivered by the cloud HPC solution. Poort said: ‘By using Rescale’s cloud HPC during the race in real-time, the engineer is provided with an equivalent of a semi-truck full of computers, instantly deployed from their laptop. Putting in place a physical high performance compute cluster would have cost millions of dollars in upfront capital investment.’

The Rescale team have quickly understood the complexity of Formula 1 racing, where every thousandth of a second counts. By deploying these technologies they retain agility in their trackside infrastructure but can also access these huge computational resources whenever they are needed.

Poort stressed that cloud HPC is providing a real benefit to racing teams: ‘We are ... not only deploying cutting-edge technology, but also technology that delivers direct and tangible results through the sport. It’s very exciting for all of us.’

Rescale is a San Francisco-based cloud platform provider of simulation software and high-performance computing (HPC) solutions.