During the International Supercomputing Conference 2012 (ISC’12) held from 17th – 21st of une 2012 in Hamburg (Germany), the Mont-Blanc project was successfully highlighted both at the conference or exhibition. The ISC Conference is famous for its world-class discussions, with academia and industry leaders tackling the most importantHPC issues. Around 300 expert speakers tackles present and future HPC-related issues like Cloud, GPU, Exascale and Energy in tutorials, workshops, keynotes, BoFs, panels and other sessions.
Both Mateo Valero, the BSC Director, and Alex Ramirez, Mont-Blanc project coordinator, were invited to hold a total of two sessions promoting this European project. During all presentations both experts took the opportunity to give further details about the latest results in Mont-Blanc that has become one of the key topics among the HPC community.
On Tuesday 19th June, Prof. Mateo Valero, was invited to an hour invited session under the title “Mont-Blanc, European Approach towards Energy Efficient HPC”. He took the opportunity to raise the widely recognized power-issue of the Exascale systems. In his talk, he reviewed the design philosophies of several vendors, including HPC compute accelerators, and ARM-based mobile application processors in terms of peak performance, memory bandwidth, and energy efficiency; and he reviewed how the OmpSs programming models exploits the benefits of the Mont-Blanc approach while overcoming the drawbacks.
The second conference disseminating the project was on Wednesday 20th with a satellite event under the title “The European Way to Exascale – Presentation of the EU Funded Exascale Projects”. Alex Ramirez highlighted the Mont-Blanc system architecture to achieve the expected 7 GFLOPS / Watt objective: how chips and memory will be packaged, and connected together in a competitive performance system architecture, with leading energy efficiency. As previously announced the system will be based on the ARM processor architecture, but it has not yet selected the final silicon to power the system. In this presentation he also took the opportunity to give an overview on the selection criteria for the energy-efficient ARM-based chip to be integrated in the Mont-Blanc prototype.
Finally, the Mont-Blanc project was also promoted at the ISC’12 exhibition hall at the booths of Bull, Gnodal and Barcelona Supercomputing Center with Mont-Blanc posters and flyers.