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E4 Computer Engineering’s Showcases New Petascale OCP Platform

Today E4 Computer Engineering from Italy showcased a new PetaFlops-Class Open Compute Server with “remarkable energy efficiency” based on the IBM POWER architecture.

Finding new ways of making easily deployable and energy efficient HPC solutions is often a complex task, which requires a lot of planning, testing and benchmarking – said Cosimo Gianfreda CTO, Co-Founder, E4 Computer Engineering. – We are very lucky to work with great partners like Wistron, as their timing and accuracy means we have all the right conditions to have effective time-to-market. I strongly believe that the performance on the node, coupled with the power monitoring technology, will receive a wide acceptance from the HPC and Enterprise community.”

As an active member of the OpenPOWER Foundation, E4 Computer Engineering has a very proactive approach and desires to add a different and pioneering solution to its OpenPOWER based range, that could improve energy efficiency for its HPC and enterprise users.

With the open rack form factor compute nodes provided by Wistron, E4 was able to fully customize the solution, by adding the liquid cooling and Infiniband interconnect.

This new system, named OP 206 Gold, is a 2U 21” Open Rack Enclosure with integrated piping & power distribution. It is a Power8-based node in OCP form-factor, with leading edge features specifically engineered for HPC workloads. The node has two IBM Power8 processors, four NVIDIA Tesla P100 GPUs with NVLink interconnect and liquid cooling, that is the newest feature. Liquid cooling is key to increase the repeatability of the performance (which is not dependent upon the variation of the processor temperature) and to extend the lifespan of the components (by lowering the thermal stresses due to higher temperature).

Tesla P100 GPU accelerator with NVLink multi-GPU technology enables a new class of servers that can deliver the performance of hundreds of CPU server nodes,” said Roy Kim, Director of NVIDIA Tesla Product Management. “With the Tesla Platform and advanced OpenPOWER technology, E4 is delivering innovative, high-powered solutions to tackle the most demanding HPC and artificial intelligence workloads.”

Specifically, for the OP206 Gold, E4 Computer Engineering, Wistron and the University of Bologna developed an innovative technology for measuring, monitoring and capping the power consumption of the whole node, through the collection of data from all relevant components (processors, memory, GPU, fans) to improve energy efficiency.

The open and collaborative spirit of innovation within the OpenPOWER Foundation enables companies like E4 to take advantage of new technology and build solutions to help customers dealing with the huge volume of data in today’s technology environment,” said Ken King, IBM general manager of OpenPOWER. “The POWER8 with NVIDIA NVLink processor enables incredible velocity of data transfer between CPUs and GPUs and is ideal for emerging workloads like advanced analytics, AI and machine learning.”

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