The CEA’s Tera1000 Bull sequana supercomputer with BXI enters the TOP500 ranking
November 21, 2016
- Marks the launch of the second stage of Tera1000 project at CEA, which heralds the arrival of exascale supercomputers
- Atos adds a 20th HPC system in the TOP500 using a revolutionary BXI technology
Paris, 22 November 2016 – Atos, an international leader in digital services, and CEA announce that the first Bull sequana equipped with BXI (Bull eXascale Interconnect) has entered the TOP500 ranking of the most powerful supercomputers in the world. A total of 20 supercomputers developed by Atos are currently ranked in the TOP500 list*.
The Bull sequana supercomputer equipped with BXI is the first “cell” of the 25-petaflop supercomputer that Atos will supply to The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) in 2017 as part of the Tera1000 project. Its architecture heralds the next generation of exascale supercomputers for the 2020s. The first phase of the Tera1000 supercomputer at CEA is currently ranked #55 in the TOP500.
One single cell ranked in TOP500
The system that is ranked in the TOP500 is a single Bull sequana cell, featuring 85 compute blades interconnected by a BXI network, with a total of 220 Intel® Xeon Phi™ 7250 processors, coming to a theoretical peak power of 670 teraflops. It is developing a Linpack performance of 380.5 teraflops. For the first time in the world, a supercomputer is equipped with the new generation BXI network developed by Atos. BXI is one of the key technologies that will eventually enable us to reach exascale level performances.
Designed and developed in France
Bull sequana supercomputers are produced at the Atos factory in Angers, France. They are designed based on the worldwide expertise of engineers from the Atos group, as well as long-standing partnerships with major customers such as the CEA: the tried-and-tested methodology of co-design aims to optimise the performance of the simulation code – supercomputer pairing.
As François Geleznikoff, Head of the CEA’s Military Applications Division, says: “Meeting the challenge of exaflops and big data is a major issue for research, defence and industry, as it opens up a whole field that today remains unexplored and inaccessible, making it possible for us to not only understand, but also simulate complex physical phenomena and industrial systems. In Europe, the CEA, in partnership with Atos, is particularly well positioned to meet this challenge – both in terms of the expertise of its teams, and the dynamism of its computing facilities, which are open to all fields of research and industry.”
Philippe Vannier, Executive Vice-President in charge of Big Data & Security and the Chief Technology Officer in the Atos Group, adds: “Atos is incredibly proud to see the concrete results of the Tera1000 project. Today we are taking a major step on the road towards exaflops. Undoubtedly, the interconnect technologies will provide a crucial contribution in achieving exaflops performance. With BXI, Atos is confirming its leadership in the field of supercomputers and beyond in the processing of very large volumes of data.”
The Atos supercomputer ‘Santos Dumont’ at LNCC in Brazil ranked #364 received an award from the TOP500 organization as it is the largest supercomputer in South America.
*List of Atos supercomputers worldwide that are ranked in the TOP500:
#34 – DKRZ – Deutsches Klimarechenzentrum in Germany
#50 +51 – Meteo France in France
#55 – CEA in France « Tera1000 »
#73 – Atos in France
#74 – CEA/TGCC-GENCI in France “Curie”
#75 – CEA/CCRT in France
#83 – Atos in France „Diego“
#97 – SURFsara in the Netherlands “Cartesius”
#104 – CEA in France « Tera100 »
#107 – TU Dresden, ZIH in Germany
#128 – EDF in France
#211 – Centre Informatique National (CINES) in France
#364 –Laboratório Nacional de Computação Científica in Brazil « Santos Dumont »– number 1 supercomputer in South America
#393 – Bull in France « Manny »
#400 – National Centre for Nuclear Research in Poland
#456 – Atos« Bull sequana BXI » in France
#476 – Laboratório Nacional de Computação Científica in Brazil
About the CEA and the Military Applications Division
The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) is a public research organization working in four main areas: defense and security, nuclear and renewable energies, technological research for industry and fundamental research. Building on its recognized expertise, the CEA takes part in implementing cooperation projects with a wide range of academic and industrial partners. With its 16,000 researchers and employees, it is a major player in European research and is also expanding its international presence. The CEA’s Military Applications Division (“DAM”) takes charge of defence and security missions. The DAM is responsible for the design, manufacture and through-life support of the nuclear warheads that equip France’s sea- and airborne deterrence forces and of the nuclear reactors and reactor cores on French Navy submarines and aircraft carrier. The DAM also contributes to national and global security through the technical support it provides to the authorities relative to the prevention of nuclear proliferation and terrorism in chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosives domains (CBRN-E) and cybersecurity.
 Flops: FLoating-point Operations Per Second. The prefixes “tera”, “peta” and “exa” indicate the number of operations carried out in a second: tera = 1012 or thousand billions; peta = 1015 or million billions; exa = 1018 or billion billions.