Europe’s Fastest Computer Inaugurated at Jülich

14/02/2013

Jülich’s new supercomputer JUQUEEN was inaugurated at Forschungszentrum Jülich today in the presence of representatives of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, BMBF for short, and the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Research of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, MIW). The supercomputer is currently the fastest in Europe and has a peak performance of 5.9 petaflops, that means about six quadrillion arithmetic operations per second. It is simultaneously one of the most energy efficient supercomputers worldwide. The BlueGene/Q-System from IBM opens up new possibilities for complex scientific simulations to researchers, especially those in the neurosciences.

 

"With the JUQUEEN, Forschungszentrum Jülich presents itself again as a leading institution for highly complex scientific calculations. The supercomputer is another further step in expanding the European computer infrastructure," emphasized BMBF Parliamentary State Secretary, Thomas Rachel MdB. "Just how important such a computer is for research in Europe, is evident through involvement in the EU flagship project Human Brain Project. This proves: Germany and particularly Jülich stand out in the field of supercomputer compared to the rest of Europe."

Helmut Dockter, State Secretary at MIWF, highlighted the importance of the new top computer for the Federal State of North-Rhine Westphalia: "Not only do different universities profit from JUQUEEN, but businesses in NRW profit as well. The new computer will further increase the attractivity of NRW as a place for science and business. The computer also serves as an investment in the education and acquisition of outstanding researchers."

JUQUEEN was financed by the Helmholtz Association and by the Gauss Centre for Supercomputer, GCS, both equally by federal and state funds. Now the three GCS locations, Forschungszentrum Jülich, the Stuttgart Supercomputer Centre, and the Leibniz Computing Center in Garching are equipped with petascale systems. Together these centers create the largest and most capable platform by far for computer supported sciences and industrial research in Europe.

JUQUEEN was expanded in steps to 28 racks from 2012 to the beginning of 2013, attaining a maximum computing power of 5.9 petaflops. The new Jülich supercomputer is the first supercomputer in Europe to have a peak performance of over 5 Petaflops – and with around two Gigaflops per Watt it is simultaneously one of the most efficient systems. JUQUEEN holds fifth place on current TOP500, the list of the fastest supercomputers worldwide, and fifth place on the current Green500, the list of the most energy efficient computers in the world.

Professor Achim Bachem, Chairman of the Board at Forschungszentrum Jülich explained, "Simulations on top performing computers are an indispensable aid for science and the industry. The need for computation time is inexorably increasing. This was evident through the high workload of our computers in the past. Projects from different scientific fields such as neuroscience, computer-supported biology and energy and climate research, or quantum physics will benefit from the increased computer power."

The system is particularly suited to programs that can run parallel to each other on a large number of processor cores – JUQUEEN has a total of over 458752, that is almost half a million cores. Comprehensive computations on phase transitions in data storage materials are already running on JUQUEEN. Jülicher brain researchers are using the new system to simulate activity in brain structures – partly in collaboration with the Human Brain Project. The project, whose goal is to simulate the human brain, was selected as a European FET flagship project at the end of January 2013. Furthermore, elementary particle physicists use the Jülich supercomputer, to make predictions about the standard model of physics – and to test this by comparing it to experiments in the large hadron collider at CERN.

JUQUEEN  is operated by the Helmholtz Association in the Supercomputer Research Program at Forschungszentrum Jülich. Scientists from Germany and all over Europe are allowed to use the new Jülich supercomputer. About 70 percent of the computing time is allocated by two supercomputing associations: the Gauss Centre for Supercomputer, GCS for short, and the European research infrastructure PRACE. The remaining 30 percent is available for users from the Forschungszentrum Jülich and the Jülich Aachen Research Alliance, JARA for short.

Contact Person:

Jülich Supercomputing Centre (JSC)
Phone 02461 61-6402

 

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