NASA’s Ames Research Center, in collaboration with Hewlett Packard, has announced a new supercomputer with the opening of NASA’s Modular Supercomputing Facility in Silicon Valley.
Aitken is capable of saving resources such as electricity and water by utilizing way less than conventional supercomputers. It comes equipped with unique cooling capabilities for enhanced performance and optimal use of energy resources.
The supercomputer is named after American astrologer Robert Grant Aitken and is modular.
It can expand to up to 16 modules for computing and data storage. Aitken is based on another prototype facility called Electra that was developed back in 2016.
Aitken can run complicated simulations at 3.69 petaFLOPs of theoretical performance real quick, which will ensure accurate and smooth landings on the moon. Additionally, the supercomputer has 1,150 nodes and 46,080 cores.
Aitken Tech Specs
The Aitken supercomputer is powered by 2nd Generation Intel Xeon Scalable processors along with Mellanox InfiBand for high networking. Based on an end-to-end HPE SGI 8600 system, the supercomputer comes with 221TB of memory and Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) of 1.03.
Furthermore, it comes with Schneider Electric smart shelter containers that allow “easy-to-deploy, prefabricated IT infrastructure packaged within a secure, weatherproof, fire-rated, data module for remote or special applications.“
It is suggested that the modular nature of a supercomputer helped save approximately 2 million kilowatt-hours of power and over 3 million gallons of water in 2018. Thus it will help in reducing the cost of moon landings.
This explains NASA’s interest in officially developing one for a smooth landing on the lunar surface that too without wasting resources.
The new facility will be used by around 1,500 scientists and engineers across the country from NASA centers, industry and academia.