Viginia Tech shows off new supercomputer

Dec. 21, 2011 at 7:52 PM
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BLACKSBURG, Va., Dec. 21 (UPI) -- Virginia Tech says its new HokieSpeed supercomputer is among the best and fastest in the global high-speed computing arena.

HokieSpeed has been placed at Number 96 on the most recent Top500 List, the industry-standard ranking of the world's 500 fastest supercomputers, a Virginia Tech release said Wednesday.

The supercomputer rates even higher in energy efficiency, named number 11 in the world on the November 2011 Green500 List, a compilation of supercomputers that use less energy to do more, the release said.

Installed at Virginia Tech's Corporate Research Center, HokieSpeed -- the word "Hokie" coming from an old Virginia Tech sports cheer -- contains 209 nodes, or separate computers, connected to one another to create a single supercomputer with more than 2,500 central processing unit cores and more than 185,000 graphics processor unit cores to compute with, its builders said.

"HokieSpeed is a versatile heterogeneous supercomputing instrument, where each compute node consists of energy-efficient central-processing units and high-end graphics-processing units," computer science Professor Wu Feng said. "This instrument will empower faculty members, students, and staff across disciplines to tackle problems previously viewed as intractable or that required heroic efforts and significant domain-specific expertise to solve."

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