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Freie Universität Berlin invests in new HPC facility

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The Freie Universität Berlin in Germany has selected a proposal from ClusterVision to design and install a new HPC cluster for its central services (ZEDAT), augmenting the existing IBM Power/AIX environment. The selected design configuration is a commodity (X86), Linux-based system, comprising 238 Intel Xeon CPUs with 1,408 cores (228 hexa-core plus 10 quad-core CPUs), and 119 nodes arranged as 113 compute, one login, two administration and three storage nodes. System connectivity is via a low-latency Qlogic InfiniBand network. Storage will be provided as 180 Tbyte of fast parallel scratch, with an expected aggregate performance of 6GB/s. A further 18 Tbyte of local storage will be included as a failover service. The assembled system is designed to provide energy-efficient, cost-effective computing power, and is expected to achieve an HPL (High Performance Linpack) benchmark result of 13 Tflops.

System management will be provided by release 5.2 of Bright Cluster Manager-Advanced Edition, from Bright Computing, with Scientific Linux as a basis. It will also feature FraunhoferFS (FhGFS), the high-performance parallel file system from the Fraunhofer Competence Center for High-Performance Computing. The new facility will significantly enhance the department’s HPC capability, providing computing power to the University’s extended research community. One of the key applications of the system will be CP2K, which is used to perform atomic and molecular level simulations of solid state and liquid biological systems.