Home > AMD > AMD Chips in with Cray for World’s Fastest Computer AMD Chips in with Cray for World’s Fastest Computer Submitted by Max 2006-06-20 AMD 26 Comments The world’s first commercial one-petaflops supercomputer has been commissioned, Codenamed ‘Baker’, the 24000-socket, Opteron-based Linux system is due to be installed at the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory in 2008. About The Author Thom Holwerda Follow me on Twitter @thomholwerda 26 Comments 2006-06-20 6:19 pm A.H. Hopefully US Department of Energy will have enough energy to power this baby ) Edited 2006-06-20 18:20 2006-06-20 6:39 pm Sphinx When done with that I’d like one with 24,000 am2 sockets using ddr2-800 to benchmark against it. 2006-06-20 8:03 pm suryad Well benchmarks show AM2 is not much faster…so I would rather have a same setup just with the K8L monster supposed to be coming out next year based on 65 nm technology. 2006-06-20 8:23 pm smitty This one is probably going to be using K8L processors anyway, so it should be faster than AM2. 2006-06-20 6:49 pm joelito_pr They want to create a new super heater for the winter, nice 2006-06-20 6:58 pm werfu What can do a energy agency with 1 petaflop of processing power? Sure, calculate the hole US energy need… I guest this comp won’t be used by the NSA to analyse our phone calls, isn’t it? 2006-06-20 7:35 pm yanik Yeah, why would the US Department of Energy need the World’s Fastest Computer? I just love those american conspiracy theories. Anyone saw Loose Change? As for ‘Baker’, why didn’t they wait for conroe? Doesn’t conroe beat the sh*t out of any AMD cpu? 2006-06-20 8:04 pm suryad Only in single threaded performance yes it does. But then again with all those sockets I dont think Conroe has the badnwidth capabilities needed to scale as well as AMD processors do. 2006-06-20 8:09 pm butters “As for ‘Baker’, why didn’t they wait for conroe? Doesn’t conroe beat the sh*t out of any AMD cpu?” Maybe for UP and small MP systems, but for Cray, AMD’s Hypertransport is the killer app. They’ve got their SeaStar high-speed interconnect working well with 4-way Opteron nodes already, so this is a no-brainer. Intel’s got the better roadmap in embedded and mobile processors, but AMD’s got the better roadmap for servers and HPC, particularly in high-density and cluster-MP scenarios (where IBM’s System P is a hard sell, even on the very high-end). I’m still mad at free-market economics for killing the development of high-end vector processors. Only because of the PS3 is there an outside chance of another vector powerhouse within the next 10 years. It doesn’t make sense to pump all of those power-sapping clock edges through thousands of CPUs unless the code is very branch-heavy, and HPC is not. Cray got it right the first time, and the investors have themselves to blame for being too bullish on the inherently low-volume HPC market. 2006-06-21 6:15 am Marcellus I think it’s more because Cray already have a working solution that is AMD based. I don’t doubt that they could make an equal or better Conroe system, but that would require investments that are simply not needed now. If Cray had to design this from scratch, it would be more interesting to see what processors they would go with. 2006-06-20 8:21 pm cerbie “Yeah, why would the US Department of Energy need the World’s Fastest Computer?” See your skies and gas prices lately? Why wouldn’t that agency want one? We need solutions, and people aren’t about to stop buying SUVs (you know, conserve, so deman isn’t skrocketting). “As for ‘Baker’, why didn’t they wait for conroe? Doesn’t conroe beat the sh*t out of any AMD cpu?” Does Conroe beat the K8? Yes. Will it beat the K8L and friends? We’llhave to see. Did Intel give Cray any goodies? Did maybe they treat them poorly? Did AMD and Cray get in some kind of contract, maybe? Or, was Cray just impressed enough the last time around to not want to switch? Maybe it as to do with the upgrades to other systems. 2006-06-20 8:29 pm smitty Yeah, why would the US Department of Energy need the World’s Fastest Computer? 2 words: physics simulations Or more specifically, they simulate nuclear explosions ever since test detonating nuclear weapons was banned in the US. 2006-06-20 11:40 pm Cloudy That would be Livermore. Oak Ridge does, um, other things. 2006-06-21 2:22 pm Kochise “Or more specifically, they simulate nuclear explosions ever since test detonating nuclear weapons was banned in the US.” Hmmm, they can always test their WOMD in Afghanistan or Irak. Oh, wait, there’s still some drops of oil left, must dry them off before testing things any further In simulation, at least you avoid collateral damages with the native civilians ! Kochise 2006-06-21 2:58 pm Sphinx Yeah, why would the US Department of Energy need the World’s Fastest Computer? predicting the spreading hole in the ozone and how long this planet has to live at our current consumption rate. 2006-06-20 10:48 pm theine Or more specifically, they simulate nuclear explosions ever since test detonating nuclear weapons was banned in the US. So the US Department of Energy is the US Department of weapons of mass destruction in disguise? Interesting. 2006-06-20 11:01 pm smitty The US military farms out most of its equipment/weaponry to the private sector, but obviously nuclear weapons are only designed by the govt. So the DOE was the obvious place since they were interested in nuclear power anyway. In fact, that’s just about the only place that would hire a nuclear scientist except for power plants and they obviously wouldn’t be doing research there. 2006-06-20 11:46 pm Cloudy actually, DOE was created in the mid 70s from the original nuclear agencies: http://www.mbe.doe.gov/me70/history/overview.htm “nuclear” scientists are hired by anyone doing radiation research, including medicine, but the vast majority of them don’t work for the weapons labs, but rather for civilian particle research facilities and universities, like CERN and SLAC. (Why yes, I do glow in the dark. Why do you ask?) 2006-06-20 11:47 pm Cloudy is a very ironic name if you know the history of nuclear weapons. 2006-06-21 5:49 am dylansmrjones I think it’s more sad than ironic. 2006-06-21 12:08 am Jody one-petaflops? Wow, the current first place on top500.org is 280.6 TFlop/s, it the only system ever to pass the 100 TFlop/s mark and at 1 Peta this thing is going to be ginormus. 2006-06-21 1:45 am setuid_w00t Obviously they will have enough power, but with an unlimited supply of electricity, I’m surprised they didn’t go for an Intel solution. 2006-06-21 2:41 am suryad Why would they go Intel when they have a better processor out there? 2006-06-21 1:50 am hraq There are many uses for it: 1. Nuclear Physics 2. Chemical advancements 3. Biological discoveries 4. Leasing for other Univerisities, research institutions and whome are interested. 2006-06-21 2:20 pm Kochise I’m sure Unreal 5 will rocks with such a power to calculate each particle interaction with the scene elements and the player. Kochise 2006-06-21 8:52 pm joelito_pr Does anyone knows if there’s any new supercomputer that’s planning to use the new windows?