High-Performance Computing | News

U Maryland Launches Supercomputer With the Power of 10,000 Laptops

A 300-teraflop supercomputer named Deepthought2 will now power research at the University of Maryland. Housed in the institution's new 9,000-square-foot Cyberinfrastructure Center, Deepthought2 was developed with high-performance computing solutions from Dell and will support advanced research activities ranging from studying the formation of the first galaxies to simulating fire and combustion for fire protection advancements.

Deepthought2 replaces its namesake Deepthought, installed in 2006. According to a university statement, "the new supercomputer is 10 times faster than its predecessor, able to complete between 250 trillion and 300 trillion operations per second. It has a petabyte (1 million gigabytes) of storage and is connected by an InfiniBand network, a very high-speed internal network. Put another way, Deepthought2 is the equivalent of 10,000 laptops working together, it has 2,000 times the storage of an average laptop, and its internal network is 50 times faster than broadband."

Several university divisions and colleges as well as researchers from a variety of disciplines worked together to obtain the new central computing resource and bring the Cyberinfrastructure Center online. The data center facility is specifically designed to provide the space, energy-efficient climate control and backup power needed for the supercomputer.

"Deepthought2 places the University of Maryland in a leadership position in the use of high-performance computing in support of diverse and complex research," said Ann Wylie, professor and interim vice president for information technology, in a press release. "This new supercomputer will allow hundreds of university faculty, staff and students to pursue a broad range of research computing activities locally — such as multi-level simulations, big data analysis and large-scale computations — that previously could only be run on national supercomputers."

About the Author

About the author: Rhea Kelly is executive editor for Campus Technology. She can be reached at rkelly@1105media.com.

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