Tuesday, March 5 • 11:00am - 11:20am
Systems & Facilities: CORAL System Update

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IBM has completed delivery of the largest HPC and AI machines as part of the CORAL project with the Summit and Sierra installations.

We will provide a brief review of the original CORAL objectives, how the Summit/Sierra systems were projected to perform and current measured performance and capabilities of the production systems.
Driven by the high efficiencies demanded by large supercomputer machines and the slowdown of Moore’s law of scaling, the CORAL systems address the design challenges with a heterogenous approach. Applications have a diverse set of needs that can be addressed with strong CPUs for Analytics capabilities and powerful GPUs for massively parallel sections. Examples of analytics capabilities well suited to CPUs are exemplified by complex codes with data dependent paths, lots of indirection and pointer chasing, and dependency on latency of the memory subsystem, as found in Oil and Gas Reservoir simulation, AI and Graph Analytics. Examples of massively parallel compute which are well suited to GPUs are exemplified by simple kernels, dense FP operations, and simple data access patterns as found in Oil and Gas Seismic simulation, financial value at risk and image analytics. Tying diverse compute engines together through a high bandwidth interconnect and state of the art memory systems was key in meeting application needs.

IBM created our Data Centric Systems approach to facilitate the design of CORAL to address these demands with four guiding principles: 1) Minimize data motion, 2) Enable compute at all levels of the system hierarchy, 3) Modularity of system components, 4) Application-driven design. With OpenPOWER, IBM created an environment for modulatory with its partners: NVIDIA supplied the GPU for highly parallel work, and Mellanox provided the high-speed interconnect for the system.
Several other key components and their current contributions to CORAL and how they are enabling unique capabilities are the parallel file system in use (IBM Spectrum Scale) and AI technology provided by PowerAI.

IBM will discuss how CORAL is contributing to the transformation of HPC and AI with a view on the types of science work being performed, to include some of the novel ideas IBM Research is pursuing around Intelligent Simulation and how we collaborate with the industry.
IBM will provide a point-of-view on any then current, public information on planned/expected projects beyond CORAL, planned IBM technologies and outline some of the challenges of future Exascale systems.



Tuesday March 5, 2019 11:00am - 11:20am CST