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Sunday, June 12, 2011

India’s Fastest Supercomputer Developed By ISRO

ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization) on 2nd May, 2011 announced that it has recently built a supercomputer that is the fastest supercomputer in India. It claims to be the fastest in terms of theoretical peak performance which is at 220 trillion FLOPS – Floating Point Operations Per Second.
The supercomputer is named SAGA 220 which stands for Supercomputer for Aerospace with GPU Architecture 220 TeraFLOPS. The supercomputer was inaugurated by K. Radhakrishnan, who is presently the Chairman of ISRO. It was inaugurated at the newly established supercomputing facility of the Vikam Sarabhai Space Centre.
SAGA 220 ISRO Vikram sarabhai space centre supercomputer teraflop India
The estimated cost to build the supercomputer comes at around Rs 14 crore(140 million) INR. The computer was built by VSSC and fully designed by VSSC. According to ISRO the supercomputer was developed “using commercially available hardware, open source software components and in-house developments.”
This newly developed supercomputer would be used by the scientists. According to ISRO, “It will be used by space scientists for solving complex aerospace problems.”
The SAGA 220 is equipped with 400 NVIDIA Tesla 2070 GPUs (Graphic Processing Units) and the same number of CPUs (Central Processing Units). The CPUs are of Intel Quad Core Xeon which was supplied by WIPRO Technologies. The GPUs and the CPus are the main driving force behind such fast processing speed of the supercomputer SAGA 220. All the GPUs together provide a performance of 500 GigaFLOPS whereas all the CPUs together provide a performance of 50 GigaFLOPS.
The supercomputer is made in such a way that it could easily be scaleable to many PetaFLOPS (1000 TeraFLOPS). The advantage of designing a system using GPU based system over regular CPU based system is that GPU based system has its advantages in terms of power, cost and space requirements. The system consumed 150 kilowatt of power and was environmentally green.

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