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The HPC Technology Roadmap

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The HPC Technology Roadmap: Status Report 1 (March 20, 2001)


As a part of the ENACTS program, NSC (National Supercomputer Centre) in Sweden is performing a study of future HPC technologies. The objective of the study is to determine the technological and economical trends which will prescribe the hardware architectures of HPC systems 2006-2011 and to evaluate the effects this will have on applications software.


Instead of performing a traditional survey and evaluation of the development of various components that comprises an HPC system we are planning to look at the projected user demands that European HPC centers will have to meet in the future. To do this we will conduct interviews and discussions with key HPC technology providers focused around an investment in a large HPC system at a fictive HPC center aiming at providing resources satisfying the user demands 2006-2011. To provide a platform and starting point for the discussions we will specify user demand scenarios in the context of this fictive procurement. The discussions with vendors will thus be based on how participating companies sees the future development of HPC technology (components and systems) in view of these demands. The discussions will not deal with specific details of systems currently being planned but instead target the long term general development of HPC, thus avoiding any potential conflict with proprietary non-disclosure information. We believe that this approach will make the task interesting and concrete, and also facilitate a beneficial exchange of information between vendors, our user base and ourselves. We also believe that the results will be directly applicable to European and other HPC centers.


Since the kick off meeting in Bologna we have made a test of our proposed method on a few key persons at HPC vendors. At this stage we have identified and contacted the key people at all vendors to use as first contacts. Furthermore we have developed a detailed plan for how the vendors should be approached in order to make it as likely as possibly that our request should receive the proper attention and provide us with information we need. Our approach relies on a comprehensive response from a number of vendors and it is of crucial importance that most larger vendors of HPC systems participate in the survey. At the same time NSC has devised HPC technology roadmap relevant questions to be included in the ENACTS questionaire to user groups. The response from the user community will be used in our contacts with participating vendors.

Page last modified: 2002-12-11 13:56
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