New supercomputer at MIT Lincoln Laboratory is "green"

  Defense Department awarded computer for use in developing signal and
  image processing algorithms

The Department of Defense's High Performance Computing Modernization Program in 2008 awarded MIT Lincoln Laboratory a supercomputer for developing novel sensor processing algorithms. This computer, TX-GreenPioneer, with two petabytes (one quadrillion bytes) of memory, will interface with the Laboratory’s interactive, on-demand cloud computing system, LLGrid, and will use innovative technologies to minimize energy consumption. The supercomputer is currently undergoing testing at the Laboratory.

TX-GreenPioneerThe TX-GreenPioneer has been installed at Lincoln Laboratory. The system was provided to the Laboratory via a DoD High Performance Computing Modernization Program Distributed High Performance Investment in collaboration with Hewlett Packard, Inc.

Lincoln Laboratory will use TX-GreenPioneer to develop, prototype, and transition next-generation signal and image processing algorithms for Department of Defense applications. A critical element of the algorithm development process is interactive test and refinement, which require interactive/on-demand access using high-level programming environments. LLGrid provides this, supporting hundreds of users at Lincoln Laboratory, the majority of whom run parallel MATLAB codes.

TX-GreenPioneer is the next-generation of the Laboratory’s TX-2500 supercomputer, named in honor of the TX-0 developed at Lincoln Laboratory in the 1950s as the world's first interactive high performance computing system. The designation GreenPioneer was chosen to highlight the concurrent use of the computer to explore revolutionary approaches to managing energy consumption. Since 2005, Lincoln Laboratory's LLGrid team, led by Dr. Jeremy Kepner, has partnered with Holyoke Gas & Electric, managed by James Lavelle, to create an integrated "green" supercomputing solution that utilizes the renewable energy resources of Holyoke Gas & Electric to reduce the carbon footprint of the system by tenfold compared to traditional systems.

LLGrid teamThe Lincoln Laboratory LLGrid team will be using the TX-GreenPioneer supercomputer to not only develop novel algorithms for DoD applications, but also to investigate energy conservation approaches. Left to right are Chansup Byun, Matthew Hubbell, Julie Mullen, Andrew McCabe, Jeremy Kepner, Albert Reuther, Antonio Rosa, William Bergeron, William Arcand, and Peter Michaleas.

The TX-GreenPioneer will also be a pathfinder for Massachusetts' Greening-of-IT initiative that is endeavoring to develop the Holyoke High Performance Computing and Training Center (HPCC) to provide the computing support critical to high-technology applications. HPCC, a collaboration between higher education, industry, and government, is envisioned as a resource for the area's academic and corporate research, and is planned to take advantage of Holyoke's sustainable energy resources—hydroelectric, solar, and wind power. After testing at Lincoln Laboratory in Lexington, the supercomputer will be installed at the center in Holyoke.

Posted December 2011

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