Low-Power High Performance Computing - EPCC - University of ...

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Low-Power High Performance Computing - EPCC - University of ...

3.5 Microsoft XBox Cluster

Another research team at the University of Houston, have built a low-cost computer

cluster with unmodified XBox game consoles 4 . Microsoft XBox comes with an Intel

Celeron/P3 733 MHz processor processor and 64MB DDR RAM. The 4-node cluster

achieved a total of 1.4 GFLOPs when executing High Performance Linpack on Debian

GNU/Linux, consuming between 96 and 130 Watts. That gives a range from 10.7 to

14.58 MFLOPs per single Watt. The cluster supported MPI, Intel C++ and Fortran

compilers.

3.6 IBM BlueGene/Q

In terms of high-end supercomputing related projects, IBM BlueGene/Q prototype machines

aim at designing and building energy-efficient supercomputer based on embedded

processors. On the latest Green500 list (June 2011), the BlueGene/Q Prototype 2

is listed as the most energy efficient system, achieving a total of 85880 GFLOPs overall

performance. That translates to 2097.19 MFLOPs per Watt as it consumes 40.95 kW.

The second most energy-efficient entry belongs to BlueGene/Q Prototype 1, achieving

1684.20 MFLOPs per Watt. The BlueGene/Q is still not available on the market.

3.7 Less Watts

The overall rising concerns over power efficiently, drop in power costs and reduction

of overall CO2 have pushed software vendors to look into saving power on software

level. The Open Source Technology Center of Intel Corporation, have established an

open source project, LessWatts.org, that aims to save power with Linux on Intel Platforms.

The project focuses on end users, developers and operating system vendors by

delivering those components and tools that are needed to reduce the energy required by

the Linux operating system 6 . The project targets on desktop, laptops and commodity

servers and achieves power savings by enabling, or disabling, specific extensions on the

Linux Kernel.

3.8 Energy-efficient cooling

Apart from the considerations and research into reducing the overall energy of a system

using energy-efficient processors, there has been research done and solutions produced

in reducing the cooling needs of clusters and data-centres that require huge amounts

4 Microsoft XBox Cluster - http://www.bgfax.com/xbox/home.html

6 Less Watts. Saving Power with Linux - http://www.lesswatts.org/

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