HPC research

Deadline extended for UrgentHPC workshop at SC20

Author: Nick Brown
Posted: 31 Aug 2020 | 15:33

SC, the world's largest high-performance computing conference, will be held virtually during the week of November 9-13. It is a disappointment not to be going to SC in person, but the flip side is that the conference will be open to a wider audience than would have been possible had it been held in Atlanta as originally planned.

This year I am organising the second run of the Urgent HPC workshop, which is an event aimed at bringing together those who are researching the role of HPC and data science in making urgent decisions to tackle disasters. The event first ran last year at SC19 and comprised a keynote talk by the founder of Technosylva – the world’s leading wildfire simulation code development company – six technical papers, and a panel. Based upon that success we decided to run the workshop again this year, and given all that has happened since then, exploring this topic is more timely than ever before! 

Optimising sparse-matrix vector multiplication on Intel Xeon Gold processors

Author: Guest blogger
Posted: 24 Aug 2020 | 18:11

Edoardo Coronado visited EPCC from 18th May–15th August 2019 under the HPC-Europa3(link is external) programme. Here he gives us an update on his research since his previous blog article.

During my visit to EPCC in 2019 under the auspices of the HPC-Europa3 programme, I worked on optimising routines to perform the Sparse Matrix-Vector (SpMV) product, a common operation in lots of scientific applications, on Intel Xeon Gold processors and Graphics Processing Units (GPUs).

ePython: can we have our cake and eat it?

Author: Guest blogger
Posted: 17 Aug 2020 | 15:02

Maurice Jamieson is a third-year PhD student at the EPCC working on the programmability of micro-core architectures, both in terms of design and implementation, through the development of the ePython programming language.

We recently published a paper at the Scientific Computing with Python (SciPy) 2020 conference that outlined the latest developments to ePython, a version of Python specifically written to leverage micro-core architectures. The paper provides a detailed discussion of the design and implementation of ePython, touching on the latest updates to manage arbitrary large data sets and native code generation. This post will summarise key elements of the paper.

Advanced systems engineering for cybersecurity

Author: Kostas Kavoussanakis
Posted: 24 Jul 2020 | 16:26

 

EPCC has collaborated with Intel® and Illuminate Technologies to investigate innovative performance-enhancing, packet-processing approaches within the type of Cloud environment expected to be seen in 5G deployments. 

ARCHER2: first four cabinets ship from the US

Author: Lorna Smith
Posted: 7 Jul 2020 | 10:04

Covid-19 has created significant challenges for the delivery of the new ARCHER2 system. It is therefore really exciting to see the first 4 cabinets of ARCHER2 leave Cray/HPE’s factory in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin to begin their journey to Edinburgh.  

ARCHER2 will replace the current ARCHER system, a Cray XC30, as the UK’s National HPC system. Once fully configured, this should provide an average of over 11 times the science throughput of ARCHER.

PhD opportunities at EPCC

Author: Nick Brown
Posted: 29 Jun 2020 | 14:38

We currently have applications open for PhD students, starting late 2020/early 2021 depending upon their situation. Four of these have been advertised on findaphd, with the closing date at the end of the month.

In addition to our MSc programmes, EPCC also hosts a number of PhD students who are researching a diverse set of areas: from traditional performance optimisation for HPC, to new data science technologies and novel computing architectures. Supervised by EPCC members of staff and housed in the Bayes, not only do these students benefit from being part of the UK’s leading HPC centre, but they also have access to the wider University’s large range of resources.

VESTEC Project Poster at ISC 2020 digital conference

Author: Nick Brown
Posted: 23 Jun 2020 | 15:10

This week ISC, one of the largest conferences in the supercomputing calendar, should have been running in Frankfurt. It’s a funny feeling because, as I type, I realise that if it wasn’t for COVID-19 then, instead of being stuck at home, I would have been busy navigating the Messe Frankfurt, going from one session to another.

HPC-Europa3 report: studying the strong force between quarks and gluons

Author: Guest blogger
Posted: 13 May 2020 | 15:25

HPC-Europa3 visitor Fernando Romero López, a PhD student from the Institute of Corpuscular Physics (IFIC) at the University of Valencia in Spain, visited Dr Antonio Rago of Mathematical Sciences at Plymouth University earlier this year. Here he describes his experience.

I am a physicist doing my PhD in theoretical particle physics at the University of Valencia. During January and February, I had the chance to visit the UK for a six-week research project at the University of Plymouth as a part of the HPC-Europa3 programme.

EPCC joins the UK’s ExCALIBUR programme to address the challenges of Exascale

Author: Kevin Stratford
Posted: 8 May 2020 | 09:37

ExCALIBUR is a £45.7m programme to address the challenges and opportunities offered by computing at the exascale (high performance computing at 1018 floating point operations per second). The programme will address problems of strategic importance, and how to approach them in an efficient, effective, and productive fashion on the world’s largest computers.

Under pressure

Author: Adrian Jackson
Posted: 23 Mar 2020 | 10:45

Squeezed performance

Memory under pressure

I was recently working with a colleague to investigate performance issues on a login node for one of our HPC systems. I should say upfront that looking at performance on a login node is generally not advisable, they are shared resources not optimised for performance.

We always tell our students not to run performance benchmarking on login nodes, because it's hard to ensure the results are reproducible. However, in this case we were just running a very small (serial) test program on the login node to ensure it worked before submitting it to the batch systems and my colleague noticed a performance variation across login nodes that was unusual.

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