TACC, located in Austin, is supported by the University of Texas at Austin and National Science Foundation, and grants from other federal agencies. It is part of the foundation’s XSEDE (Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment) project, aimed at giving researchers greater access to supercomputing resources.
TACC will house Stampede, the newest supercomputer at the center. When it becomes fully operational in January 2013, Stampede will offer up to 10 petaflops of performance. It will incorporate more than 5,000 PowerEdge C8220X servers from Dell, each of which will be powered by two eight-core Xeon E5-2680 chips from Intel. The cluster also will include new Xeon Phi coprocessors from Intel to ramp performance.
7Intel Xeon Phi
Housed in a room right next to Stampede—and not separated by a wall—is the Sun Constellation Linux Cluster, better known as Ranger. In production since 2008, Ranger—incorporating 3,936 sixteen-way compute nodes powered by 15,744 Opteron chips from Advanced Micro Devices—will be replaced by Stampede once the larger supercomputer is fully operational.
17Feeling the Heat
Pictured here is a hot aisle in the Ranger supercomputer. According to TACC, researchers from Stanford doing research into clean coal were able to run optimization calculations on Ranger over 20 days that on a desktop system would have taken 20 years.