Institute of Mathematical Sciences open to sharing supercomputer

July 30th, 2010 - 8:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Chennai, July 30 (IANS) The Institute of Mathematical Sciences (IMSC) is open to provide access to its new supercomputer Annapurna for use of other research organisations.
“After meeting our needs if there exist free computer time we may offer access to other research institution needing such high performance computing,” Gautam Menon, a professor at the IMSC, told IANS.

The Rs.6 crore ($1.3 million) high performance computational cluster, supplied by Silicon Graphics International in the US, was inaugurated Friday by Secretary, Department of Atomic Energy and Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) chairman Srikumar Banerjee here.

Annapurna is a factory-integrated computational cluster, with 1024 cores

of Intel Nehalem 2.93 GHz chips, 1.5 tera byte (TB) memory and storage of 30 TB.

According to Menon, with a peak speed of 12 teraflops (TF) Annapurna is currently the seventh fastest high performance computing machine in India.

A teraflop is computing speed equal to one trillion floating-point operations per second. Each floating-point operation involves a number with decimal points, as for example 3.22. These operations take longer to execute than number without decimals.

Among broad-based scientific institutions in India, the Annapurna cluster is the third fastest in India, ranking just below the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore and Tata Institute of Fundamental Research in Mumbai.

Menon said the supercomputer will be used by institute members working on condensed matter physics, lattice gauge theory, computational biology and complex systems research.

“This will enable our members and doctoral students to publish their papers in international scientific journals of great repute,” Menon added.

He said the institute’s early high computing performance machines like Kabru, Vindhya and Aravalli are still in use. Kabru is part of the Garuda grid that links 45 institutions across 17 cities for nationwide computational nodes and mass storage, Menon said.

Earlier inaugurating the Annapurna cluster, Banerjee said India was subject to technological embargo and was not able to get fast computational systems.

“There were limitations on processors. So different institutes were asked to start work on this area,” he said.

IMSC Director R.Balasubramanian thanked DAE for giving its sanction fast as the Annapurna project was not planned at the beginning of the Eleventh Plan period and was decided only midway.

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