Compute Clusters

PAOC's compute clusters provide students and researchers with enviable computing resources.

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PAOC currently supports a number of systems, principle among which are the ACES, Darwin, eLorenz and Svante compute clusters.

THE ACES CLUSTER:

ACES is a platform for cross-disciplinary collaboration between Earth science researchers and computer science researchers at MIT. For more information visit the cluster website.

THE DARWIN CLUSTER:

Named for the Darwin Project, this facility was created as a resource for modeling upper ocean biological diversity and plankton population changes. The computational core is a 512 core cluster capable of performing 6 TFLOPS with a Terrabyte of memory and half a Petabyte of storage.

  • a 128 compute cluster with 512 cores with a high-speed Myrinet interconnect.
  • a roughly 500TB high-performance GPFS parallel filesystem
  • a 60 2560x1600 pixel panel, 240 Megapixel display system
  • 10 gigabit based networking infrastructure linking around campus and to external project partners.

For more information, visit the Darwin Computational Facility wiki.

THE ELORENZ CLUSTER:
  • 4 x dual X5550 (quad-core) @ 2.67GHz, 24GB/node
  • 4 x dual X5650 (hex-core)  @ 2.67GHz, 24GB/node
  • low-latency infiniband network
  • 13TB glusterfs filesystem (nufa)
  • 80 real cores = 160 hyperthreaded cores

To request a username on elorenz, e-mail elorenz-admin@techsquare.com. For more information, visit the eLorenz Cluster wiki.

THE SVANTE CLUSTER:

Named after  Svante Arrhenius, the Swedish scientist who first speculated about fossil fuel emissions and the greenhouse effect, the Svante cluster is available for students, post-docs, and researchers affiliated with The Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change  or The Center For Global Change Science.

  • 64 compute nodes, using the either the Intel "nehalem" or "sandy bridge" chipset, running @ 2.60-3.47 GHz and equipped with 12-64 GB RAM per node (approximately 750 total physical cores)
  • Six dedicated high-capacity file server nodes; total disk storage capacity is over 400 TB.
  • Compute and file server nodes interconnected by a low-latency infiniband fabric.

For more information or to request an account, please email svante-info@mit.edu

VIZUALIZATION TOOLS

To provide a means of visualizing large single image fields, or simultaneously comparing multiple synchronous fields, researchers in PAOC has been developing and installing a growing number of "viz-walls".

The biggest installation, Viz-Wall-1, is a 10 x 6 matrix of 2560 x 1600 pixel resolution LCD's in the Stata Center. Funded as part of the Darwin Project, it provides an unparalleled tool for displaying the wealth of high-resolution images and movies generated in the course of PAOC's research activities. It also serves as a compelling outreach tool, housed as it is in a non-Earth-Sciences-centric part of campus. Under the hood (or rather behind the monitors) a head node manages processing and synchronous distribution of the component image fragments under each compute node. Two screens share one compute node between them.

The 4 x 4 screen initial prototype, Viz-Wall-0, can be found on the 16th floor of the Green Building where it is used as a teaching tool in the Synoptic Lab.

Viz-Wall-2 (Viz-Wall-1's 2 x 2 screen younger sibling) is located on the 15th Floor of the Green Building. Field tests of a touch-sensitive control screen are on-going so feel free to come and play...

The LCD walls are designed as a community facility. If you are interested in displaying information on them please contact Chris Hill or Oliver Jahn.