Tuesday, 13 November 2018 09:21

Nvidia increases Top500 presence

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Graphics processor manufacturer Nvidia has further boosted its credentials in the high performance computing space with the latest Top500 list showing that the company's GPUs power 127 of the world's fastest 500 supercomputers.

The latest Top500 list shows 127 of the world's fastest supercomputers use Nvidia GPUs, up from 86 last year.

Among them are the two fastest computers in the world (both in the US), and the fastest in Europe and Japan.

The two leading supercomputers are Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Summit (200,794.9 Tflops) and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's Sierra (125,712.0 Tflops), both of which use IBM Power CPUs as well as Nvidia Volta GPUs.

China's Sunway-based TaihuLight supercomputer was the world's fastest until it was overtaken by Summit earlier this year, and has now been relegated to third place by Sierra.

Europe's fastest is the Swiss National Supercomputing Centre's Piz Daint (100,678.7 Tflops, Intel Xeon plus Nvidia Tesla), which came in at number five.

Two places behind that is Japan's fastest supercomputer, the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology's ABCI (32,576.6 Tflops, Intel Xeon and Nvidia Tesla).

One of the newcomers to the Top500 is the Nvidia DGX-2 Pod, a cluster of 36 DGX-2 systems (pictured) delivering more than three double-precision petaflops. Nvidia estimates that a cluster of just 11 DGX-2s would qualify for the latest Top500 list.

Nvidia GPUs are also used in eight out of the top ten and 22 of the top 25 supercomputers on the Green500 list. Nvidia's own DGX SaturnV Volta system took second place by achieving 15.113 Gflops/watt, behind Shoubu system B, a Pezy/Exascaler system at Japan's Advanced Center for Computing and Communication which recorded 17.604Gflops/watt.

"This is a breakout year for Nvidia in the world of supercomputing," said Nvidia founder and chief executive Jensen Huang.

"With the end of Moore's law, a new HPC market has emerged, fuelled by new AI and machine learning workloads. These rely as never before on our high performance, highly efficient GPU platform to provide the power required to address the most challenging problems in science and society."

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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