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U Florida HiPerGator Supercomputer Features High-Performance Storage Appliance

The University of Florida (UF) has implemented the state's fastest supercomputer with a 2.88 petabyte high-performance storage appliance.

The university unveiled the new supercomputer in May at the 25,000 square foot data center built to house it. UF worked with Dell, Terascala, Mellanox, and AMD to build the $3.4 million machine. The HiPerGator supercompter has a peak speed of 150 trillion calculations per second and features the Dell|Terascala high-performance computing HSS 4.5 storage appliance (DT-HSS 4.5) with an open-source parallel file system, 16,384 processing cores, and Mellanox's FDR 56 Gbps InfiniBand interconnects.

The supercomputer uses the Terascala operating system, which transforms the Dell block storage and controllers into a storage appliance, enabling them to deliver reliable and predictable throughput at hundreds of gigabytes per second, and reducing run times to hours instead of days or weeks.

Researchers at the university will use the supercomputer to develop life-saving drugs, make decades-long weather forecasts, improve armor for troops, and other research projects. "In the coming months, some 500 researchers and 160 teams with more than $175 million in research funding will be using HiPerGator to run their experiments," said David Norton, vice president of research at UF, in a prepared statement. Because the high-performance computing center serves as a central resource shared by researchers across the entire campus, HiPerGator's speed and power is critical to enable them to complete their calculations quickly.

"If we expect our researchers to be at the forefront of their fields, we need to make sure they have the most powerful tools available to science, and HiPerGator is one of those tools," said Bernie Machen, president of UF, in a prepared statement. "The computer removes the physical limitations on what scientists and engineers can discover. It frees them to follow their imaginations wherever they lead."

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at [email protected].

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