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Evaluating Performance and Energy on ARM-based Clusters for High Performance Computing

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4 Author(s)
Padoin, E.L. ; Inst. of Inf., Fed. Univ. of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre, Brazil ; de Oliveira, D.A.G. ; Velho, P. ; Navaux, P.O.A.

The High-Performance Computing (HPC) community aimed for many years at increasing performance regardless to energy consumption. However, energy is limiting the scalability of next generation supercomputers. Current HPC systems already cost huge amounts of power, in the order of a few Mega Watts (MW). The future HPC systems intend to achieve 10 to 100 times more performance, but the accepted energy to power those machines must remain below 20 MW. Therefore, the scientific community is investigating ways to improve energy efficiency. This paper presents a study of the execution time, power consumption, maximum power and energy efficiency using developer boards with ARM processors. Our objective is to verify the feasibility of clusters using processors that target low power consumption. As a sub product of our research we built an unconventional cluster of Panda Boards each one featuring two ARM Cortex A9 cores. We believe that these unconventional solutions bring an alternative base to build HPC clusters that respect the limits of electric energy.

Published in:

Parallel Processing Workshops (ICPPW), 2012 41st International Conference on

Date of Conference:

10-13 Sept. 2012