Pawsey plans for new power
The Pawsey Supercomputing Centre says its new supercomputer will be 30 times more powerful than its predecessors.
Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has been contracted to deliver a new supercomputer to power future high-impact Australian research projects.
Pawsey’s new system will be built using the HPE Cray EX supercomputer, with expanded data storage capabilities through the Cray ClusterStor E1000 system, significantly increased compute power and more emphasis on accelerators with future-generation AMD EPYC CPUs and AMD Instinct GPUs.
The new supercomputer will be at least 10 times more power efficient than its predecessors Magnus and Galaxy.
For the 30-fold increase in computing power, Pawsey expects the new system’s energy requirements will only increase by 50 per cent once the system is fully commissioned.
Today, more than 1,600 researchers use Pawsey’s supercomputers directly to support their computing-intensive projects, including discovering new galaxies, developing improved diagnostic tests for coronaviruses, and finding AI-enabled ways to reduce herbicide use.
The new supercomputer will help meet the exponentially increasing computing needs of Australian researchers in fields such as medicine, artificial intelligence, radio astronomy and more.
HPE was selected as the preferred vendor under a $48 million agreement following a thorough tender process led by Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO, the centre agent for Pawsey, based on energy efficiency, cost, and HPE’s integrated hardware and software solution.
The new supercomputer is part of Pawsey’s Capital Refresh Program, which is being delivered under a $70 million grant from the Australian Government announced in 2018 to upgrade Pawsey’s supercomputing infrastructure. This is in addition to $80 million granted in 2009 to establish the petascale supercomputing facility.