Dell Powers New HPC Cluster at the University of Alabama at Birmingham

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Today the University of Alabama at Birmingham unveiled a new supercomputer powered by Dell. With a peak performance of 110 Teraflops, the system is 10 times faster than its predecessor.

UAB officials were joined at a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday by Dell EMC North America President of Commercial Sales Bill Rodrigues, as well as faculty, staff and students who will benefit from the supercomputer.

This processing speed is already significantly accelerating the important work UAB researchers are doing across the institution, from computer and information sciences to engineering and health and medicine,” said Vice President for Information Technology Curt Carver. “This upgrade, along with others we are making, creates a real competitive advantage for our researchers, including students and faculty.”

The supercomputer comprises of a mix of Dell EMC PowerEdge 13th Generation Servers, all with Intel 24-core Haswell processors, 36x128GB RAM nodes, 38x256GB RAM nodes, 14x384GB RAM, four nodes with Nvidia K80 GPU cards, and four nodes with Intel Xeon Phi cards. The cluster connected with Mellanox Infiniband FDR 56Gb/s high-speed switches for parallel computations and Dell Networking 40Gb Ethernet for storage access at 10Gb Ethernet to each node. The storage platform uses Data Direct Networks, providing 6.6 PB raw/5.2 PB usable capacity via Infiniband and 40GB Ethernet. Bright Computing Advanced Cluster Management software provides complete management of the cluster.

“Dr. Carver and his team have exceeded our very high expectations in leading an aggressive expansion of our IT infrastructure for research, and what we have seen to date is just the beginning of his vision for UAB,” Watts said. “Our new capabilities will continue to attract and support top faculty, staff and students, make us more competitive to secure research funding, allow us to better care for our patients, and accelerate our world-changing discoveries.”

Dell EMC is proud to power higher-education institutions like the University of Alabama at Birmingham that use technology to address critical issues like improving health care,” said Bill Rodrigues, president of North America Commercial Sales, Dell EMC. “With their new Dell EMC HPC cluster, UAB researchers will have the compute and storage they need to aggressively research, uncover and apply knowledge that changes the lives of individuals and communities in many areas, including genomics and personalized medicine.”

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