The most powerful supercomputer in the world was made in MEXICO

The servers were built on the IBM manufacturing floor within the Guadalajara Technology Campus. The Summit is administered by the US Department of Energy and used for the simulation of complex systems.

The servers that make up the Summit supercomputer were manufactured in Mexico. Summit is the calculating machine with the highest processing capacity in the world, after defeating the Chinese Sunway TaihuLight a few weeks ago . 

9,216 IBM Power 9 processors directly connected to 27,648 Nvidia Volta memories integrate the neurons of the immense Summit computer that houses the Oak Ridge National Laboratory administered by the US Department of Energy. 

The servers were built on the IBM manufacturing floor within the Guadalajara Technology Campus. The process lasted several months. “I proudly tell you that last year the first team that left here were thousands of boxes delivered to the Department of Energy of the United States, which is the one that manages the largest supercomputer in the world,” said one of the workers, in a press tour during IBM Think Guadalajara 2018 .

The Summit supercomputer. Photo: Courtesy IBM

The IBM Power processor factory has been working for five years in the capital of Jalisco and is part of the campus that gives rise to the legend of the Mexican Silicon Valley. In these years he has developed three lines of processors: Power 7, Power 8 and Power 9. The latter is the core of OpenPower servers.

The OpenPower is an implementation 10 times faster than the Power 9. The difference between this processor and its predecessors is that while these were linked to the video cards through the PCI bus; Open Power is directly linked to three or up to six Nvidia Volta video cards. 

“Before the microprocessor had to communicate with RAM to access the video card. Now they are together and with the NVLink communication protocol, the capacity of the processor is multiplied by 10. This server integrates each of the 4,608 nodes that make up the fastest supercomputer in the world, “said one of the IBM technicians.

One of the nodes of the Summit supercomputer. Photo: Courtesy IBM

The processing capacity of Summit is 200 petaflops per second. A person who makes a calculation every second would take about 6 billion years to process what this machine calculates in just a moment. Only one of Summit’s neurons, that is, one of the OpenPower servers, is capable of processing all the information that passes through Google in a day. 

Something similar happens with its storage capacity, which is 250 petabytes, which means one could store the recording of the life of 250 people in high definition format.

In 2014, Ernest Moniz, who was then Energy Secretary of the Barack Obama administration, announced the investment of $ 325 million for the construction of two supercomputers at the Oak Ridge Laboratory and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories and entrusted this work to the OpenPower Foundation, made up of companies such as IBM, Nvidia and Mellanox, who developed the OpenPower server concept.

“The campus practically stopped to meet the request of the Department of Energy”, said the workers of IBM Guadalajara.

Simulation of complex systems, its main use

According to Baltazar Rodríguez , IBM’s technological evangelist, the task to which this type of supercomputing equipment is destined is the simulation of complex systems.

“The Oak Ridge Laboratory allows researchers around the world to submit calculation proposals that, if they are of interest, can be integrated into Summit’s processing cycles,” said Baltazar. 

Summit is able to simulate the way in which certain proteins unfold, which contributes to the design of medicines that fight diseases such as cancer.

“It is also used to study the way in which complete ecosystems behave, what is known as biological systems and in these exercises in which a lot of parallel processing has to be done, this computer makes a lot of sense,” Rodríguez said. . 

Summit occupies the space of two tennis courts and consumes the energy of a small town. 

IBM Campus in Guadalajara.

 

By Rodrigo Riquelme Source: eleconomista

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