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Louisiana State University: Faster Science, Greener System

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Organization Louisiana State University (LSU) is the state’s flagship university, chartered to educate students, support leading-edge research, and promote economic growth. The High-Performance Computing at LSU (HPC@LSU) program provides advanced technologies and expertise that foster education, research, and discovery across all disciplines at the 30,000-student institution. Challenge HPC@LSU needed more capacity and performance to support increasingly sophisticated algorithms, larger data sets, and greater user demand. HPC@LSU wanted energy-efficient technologies that would help reduce the data center’s carbon footprint and save on total cost of ownership. SOLUTION HPC@LSU is deploying a next-generation cluster of 440 Dell PowerEdge* C6220 servers, each powered by two 8-core Intel® Xeon® processors E5-2600 product family running at 2.6 GHz for a total of 7,040 computational cores. The nodes are interconnected by a 40 Gbps Mellanox InfiniBand* network. While most nodes (382) have 32 GB of memory, eight are equipped with 256 GB each and joined via ScaleMP* software to yield a single symmetric multiprocessing (SMP) machine with 128 processing cores and 2 TB of memory. Fifty nodes are each equipped with 64 GB of memory and two NVIDIA Tesla* M2090 graphics processing units (GPUs). The cluster provides peak performance of 212 TF and runs Red Hat Enterprise Linux* (RHEL*) 6. Designed to meet the demanding density, scale, and throughput requirements of cloud and HPC data centers, the energy-efficient cluster gives LSU 14 times more performance than its previous cluster, Tezpur.