Monday, November 17, 2008

SGI Molecule Packs 10,000 Atom Cores, One Ton of Awesomeness [Computers]


It may be just a concept for now, but the new SGI Molecule blows our minds with its potential power: Imagine 5,000 Atom N330 chips in just one 3U rack computer, the size of your average PC desktop. That's 10,000 cores in one single computer, or 40 more times the processing power of your typical 1U x86 cluster node. Is this possible? How do they expect to do this without actually creating a hole full of molten metal and plastic?

According to SGI, the key to make this system work is their proprietary Kelvin cooling technology, which we can only imagine works by pouring buckets of liquid nitrogen over the CPUs. According to them, all this vaporware may result in a computer that can sustain 20,000 threads of execution, with a 15TB/sec memory bandwidth per rack.

• High concurrency with 20,000 threads of execution — 40 times more than a single rack x86 cluster system
• High throughput with 15TB/sec of memory bandwidth per rack — over 20 times faster than a single rack x86 cluster system
• Greater balance with up to three times the memory bandwidth/OPS compared to current x86 CPUs
• High performance with approximately 3.5 times the computational performance per rack
• Greener with low-watt consumer CPUs and low-power memory that deliver 7 times better memory bandwidth/watt
• Innovative Silicon Graphics Kelvin cooling technology, which enables denser packaging by stabilizing thermal operations in densely configured solutions
• Operating environment flexibility, capable of running industry-standard Linux(R) implementations, with Microsoft(R) Windows(R) variants on some configurations

[SGI via Gadget Lab]