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Press release | Industrial partnerships | Supercomputers | Simulation ＆ modelling
Paris, 4 February 2016 – Following a tender bid, the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission, CEA, and its industrial partners at the Centre for Computing Research and Technology, CCRT, have invested in a new petaflop supercomputer of ~1.4 Pflops, designed by Bull, the Atos brand for technology products and software. Three times more powerful than the current computer at CCRT, it will be installed in the CEA's Très Grand Centre de Calcul (Very Large Computing Centre) in Bruyères-le-Châtel, France, mid-2016 to cover expanding industrial needs.
This new supercomputer, called
COBALT, has a peak computing/performance capacity of ~1.4 Pflops, will be three
times more powerful than the current computer and three times more energy
efficient. A private storage system, external to the computer, with a storage
capacity of 2.5 Pbytes with a
throughput of 60 GB/s shall enable users to store their data.
shall have 2304 Intel® Xeon® E5 processors (Broadwell) with a total of 32,256 cores at
2.4 Ghz and 18 hybrid nodes with Nvidia Pascal processors, for remote computing
and visualisation. The partition dedicated to the France Génomique project shall in turn, be equipped with 4032 Intel® Xeon® E5 Broadwell cores
at 2.4 Ghz and 4 very large memory nodes at 3TB/node. An InfiniBand EDR
interconnect solution (100 GB/s vs. 40 GB/s currently) forms the core of this
new computer and will allow it to increase capacity based on the needs of its
partners for the coming 4 to 5 years.
mandate of the CCRT is to support digital simulation development, particularly
in the industrial world. Established in 2003, based on a unique partnership
model in France, it has demonstrated its capacity to respond sustainably to the
needs of industry partners. It offers a wide range of high performance computing
(HPC) competencies, tailored to the growing needs of its partners, combining
security and flexibility in its use of resources.
from Airbus D&S, Areva, EDF, Herakles, Ineris, L'Oréal, Safran Tech,
Snecma, Thales, Thales Alenia Space, Techspace Aero, Turbomeca, Valeo and CEA
shall have the highest class computing resources at their disposal, necessary
for developing their projects in the future. Research into the lifetime of
power plants, the design and safety of nuclear reactors, the development of
aircraft and helicopter engines, optimisation of car ventilation and air
conditioning systems, the design of radar systems, environmental risk analyses,
studying proteins and decoding the genome, predicting the performance of
cosmetics or even the search for new materials are all areas in which numerical
simulation is growing rapidly.
Philippe Vannier, Executive Vice President Big Data & Security at
Atos concludes: “The renewed confidence of the CEA and CCRT in Bull
technologies is something we are very proud of at Atos. This project is a new
milestone accomplished within our exascale programme which aims to develop a
new generation of supercomputers by 2020 capable of achieving performance
levels in the order of exaflops, a billion billion calculations per second,
while at the same time significantly reducing energy consumption.”
 1 petabyte: a quadrillion bytes of
 The CCRT hosts the data processing infrastructure
of the France Génomique project. The latter groups together and pools the
resources of the main French genome and bioinformatics platforms.
CEA is a French government-funded technological research organisation in four main areas: low-carbon energies, defense and security, information technologies and health technologies. A prominent player in the European Research Area, it is involved in setting up collaborative projects with many partners around the world.