Fourth International Workshop on High-Performance Reconfigurable Computing Technology and Applications (HPRCTA'10)

Fourth International Workshop on High-Performance Reconfigurable Computing Technology and Applications (HPRCTA'10)

Abstracts

What is the potential for FPGA's in HPC systems in the future?
Steve Poole
Chief Scientist in the Computer Science and Mathematics Division at Oak Ridge National Laboratory


For over a decade systems designers have been using COTS parts to build HPC systems. That begs the question, why have none of them been built from FPGA's? It also begs the question, will they ever be an integral part of an HPC system? This is especially true as there have been many special purpose systems built with FPGA's. As ORNL has already publicly stated its intentions to build a +20PF machine in the 2011-2012 timeframe, built with AMD processors and GPUs. Why were FPGA's not selected? We hope to discuss potential co-design options and future potential systems with FPGA's as a more integral element.

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Industry panel
Prasanna Sundararajan
Xilinx
(Panel participants: Xilinx, Altera, XtremeData, Convey Computer, Maxeler, SRC Computer)


HPC software applications such as oil and gas seismic imaging, gene matching, database acceleration and risk evaluation of stocks and portfolios are in need of more compute power. The acceleration offered by FPGAs enables the use of algorithms that are computationally more complex and thus provide more accurate modeling and results. Additionally, given the growing concern of cooling and power costs of data centers, there is a need to build power-efficient servers. FPGAs are a key technology that can be used to accelerate applications while being power-efficient. However, success in accelerating these applications mandates the delivery of well integrated FPGA-based HPC system that has the right balance of compute density, memory bandwidth and CPU-FPGA interface connectivity and most importantly software compiler tools to program the FPGAs.


Panelists will discuss some of the applications they have accelerated and how their companies are supporting (in the case of FPGA vendors) or providing a well-integrated HPC system with software compiler tools to accelerate software on FPGA-based HPC systems.

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