AMD and Cray are building the first exascale supercomputer with speeds in excess of 1.5...

William Gayde

TS Addict
Staff member

The exact specs for Frontier haven't been released yet, but it will be built using AMD EPYC CPUs, Radeon Instinct GPUs, and Cray Slingshot interconnects. Each node in the system will have one CPU and four GPUs. The supercomputer will be used for many applications in scientific fields including sub-atomic structures, weather, genomics, fusion, and more.

Frontier will cover the size of over 2 basketball courts and will have more performance than the top 160 current fastest supercomputers combined.

The world's current fastest supercomputer, Summit, is also a joint venture between ORNL and the Department of Energy. Summit is comprised of about 2.4 million cores and 2.8PB of memory and has a peak performance of 200 PetaFLOPS.

While traditional supercomputers have employed a large number of relatively low power nodes, Frontier will use fewer nodes but they will be much higher performance. This is designed to reduce the strain on the interconnect network and to make simulations easier to deploy on the supercomputer.

We haven't received any power consumption details, but the system is expected to be operational sometime in 2021 in the 9-figure price range. While this much compute may seem unfathomable, new advances in science will surely be able to make use of it. Each new generation of supercomputer is a chance to one-up the previous fastest computer. At least until the next supercomputer dethrones this one.

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TheGoldBeaver

TS Rookie
"Frontier will have more performance than the top 160 current fastest supercomputers combined" - The statement is clearly incorrect. Summit has 200 petaFLOPS, this will have 1.5 exaFLOPS.
I don't think you realize how quickly the performance declines. The 10th place supercomputer, Sequoia, has a peak performance of only 20 petaFLOPS or .02 exaFLOPS. The 100th place, Biowulf, has a peak performance of about 2.5 petaFLOPS. These numbers were pulled off the most recent report by TOP500.
 

Squid Surprise

TS Evangelist
If only they could take all those super computers and merge them into an "uber computer"... then we can have Skynet ready to enslave us all!
 
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wiyosaya

TS Evangelist
If only they could take all those super computers and merge them into an "uber computer"... then we can have Skynet ready to enslave us all!
Actually, the means to do so exists. In essence, these computers are a network of servers. The xxxFlops count comes from adding the computational power in each contained server together, so all they would have to do is network whatever other computer they wanted, and they would have Skynet - or Colosus The Forbin Project https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0064177/

 
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Markoni35

TS Addict
With that much compute power you can make a Javascript version of Ray-Traced version of Crysis. That would be a complete waste of compute power, that would just contribute to global warming, but when you think of it, we're already doing that.

Every time you open a web page, a Javascript program is loaded (and Javascript is slow and unoptimized crappy language), employing all of your computer cores just to compile the damn program, and then to execute it. This process happens every time you open an average web page (especially if it has Google ads or analytics), on billions and billions of computers and cellphones, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Which means, damn Javascript might be one of the major causes of global warming :)
 

Engine Ear

TS Rookie
While this may prove to be the first computer to predict the exact landfall location of a Cat 5 hurricane, at 4AM on a Sunday morning of a 3-day weekend, when no one else is around, someone at Argonne National Labs is going to be kicking *** playing World of Tanks with it.