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InfiniBand Continues Dominance of TOP500

ibtaToday the InfiniBand Trade Association (IBTA) and the OpenFabrics Alliance (OFA) today announced that 204 of the world’s most powerful supercomputers accelerate performance through InfiniBand and OpenFabrics Software (OFS). At 41 percent of the TOP500 List, the InfiniBand fabric, together with OFS open source software, continues to be the interconnect of choice for the leading supercomputing systems. Furthermore, InfiniBand and OFS systems outperform competing technologies in overall efficiency, scoring an 85 percent list average for compute efficiency—with one system achieving a remarkable 99.8 percent.

InfiniBand provides HPC architects with a unique combination of superior performance, efficiency, scalability and low latency—all of which is defined within an open standard ecosystem by leading industry experts,” said Barry Barnett, InfiniBand Trade Association Co-Chair. “While the IBTA has a robust roadmap for even higher InfiniBand bandwidth, supercomputer designers will also be particularly focused on efficiency gains to control overall system costs. The TOP500 List demonstrates that InfiniBand and OFS can deliver on that concern as the technologies’ CPU offloading architecture yields the industry’s highest compute efficiency.”

The impact of InfiniBand and OFS in the TOP500 grows as the list is broken down by application areas and higher performance levels. Together, the technologies enable 70 percent of the High Performance Computing (HPC) systems segment. This segment includes academic, research and government fields, all of which require high bandwidth and CPU efficiency for processing massive data sets. For supercomputers capable of Petascale performance, the number of InfiniBand and OFS systems grew to 45, up from 33 a year ago.

“Supercomputers powered by InfiniBand and OFS reach their highest performance capacity through the speed and efficiency delivered by Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA),” said Susan Coulter, OpenFabrics Alliance Chair. “The OFA works diligently to support the maintenance and development of RDMA fabric software packages that deliver robust solutions with the microsecond latency and high bandwidth performance required by the HPC industry.”

Published twice a year, the TOP500 list ranks the world’s most powerful computer systems according to the LINPAC benchmark rating system.

InfiniBand’s ability to carry multiple traffic types over a single connection makes it ideal for clustering, communications, storage and management. As a result, the interconnect technology is used in thousands of data centers, HPC clusters, storage and embedded applications that scale from two nodes to a single cluster of tens-of-thousands of nodes. OFS, an open source software, enables RDMA fabrics, such as InfiniBand, to run applications that require extreme speeds, Petascale-level scalability and utility-class reliability.

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