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Blue Gene Active Storage boosts I/O performance at JSC

By JÜlich Research Center

November 19, 2013

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Jülich Supercomputing Center (JSC) researchers, working in collaboration with IBM, say they have successfully installed the world's first Blue Gene Active Storage (BGAS) system, integrating it into the JUQUEEN supercomputer, currently the most powerful high-performance computing system in Europe.

Active storage is an architectural concept that addresses the increasing costs of data transport between compute and storage systems. JSC's BGAS system consists of 32 nodes each connected to a newly designed PCIe card comprising 2 TB of SLC NAND flash memory. The nodes are interconnected within a three-dimensional torus network. In addition, each node is connected to a Blue Gene/Q compute system and to an external storage facility. The researchers say this architecture is especially suitable for data intensive tasks.

"Highly complex simulations such as in brain research generate large volumes of data that can no longer be processed by conventional methods," says JSC director and professor Thomas Lippert. "New I/O concepts are therefore one of the most important steps to achieve new research results using high-performance computers in these areas."

From Jülich Research Center
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