The new “JUSTUS” system, named in honor of the accomplished German chemist Justus von Liebig, will help researches in Baden-Wurttemberg to understand highly complex chemical processes with computer simulations. The system will address highly practical issues, such as energy storage and energy transformation, as well as more fundamental research on molecular mechanics, catalytic processes and the pharmaceutical effect of medications.
JUSTUS is built from more than 7,100 CPU cores in 444 compute nodes. There are two special systems for visualization which can be used by researches to directly analyze results without having to copy data for viewing on separate workstations. In addition, more than 1,000 solid state disks (SSD) are utilized, four in each compute node, combined with a central block storage device connected via an extremely fast Infiniband network. Cooperation between Ulm University’s Communication and Information Center (kiz) and NEC assures that this novel solution, which brings together the speed of local SSDs with the flexibility of central storage, is further developed using the latest software technologies.
Moreover, JUSTUS not only offers world-class performance but it is environmentally friendly at the same time. The system features the high temperature tolerance of the NEC Express5800 server, which allows the cluster to be cooled for free more than 200 days a year through a heat exchanger that does not require external cooling power. This helps the university to reduce power consumption and cooling costs, which are budgetary challenges for smaller universities.
“We selected the NEC Express5800 technology because of its superior performance and energy saving capabilities. Moreover, NEC’s custom cluster design perfectly matches our users’ demanding memory and IO requirements by combining flash disks with a central storage concept using a fast Infiniband interconnect network,” said Professor Stefan Wesner, head of the Communication and Information Center (kiz) at University of Ulm.
“Strong interest is now being seen in NEC’s new Express5800 servers from the HPC market and we are very pleased that the University of Ulm has introduced our latest energy saving technologies. This is one of the first orders we received for a large-scale Express5800 system in the European HPC market and we have already gained a good position with this new product,” said Tomoyasu Nishimura, general manager, IT Platform Division, NEC Corporation. “We look forward to continuing to offer scalar and vector server products tailored to the application environment of customers in need of high performance computing.”
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