Navy to Host Most Powerful Supercomputer in the DoD HPCMP

11 — Feb — 2020

STENNIS SPACE CENTER, Miss. — The Navy Depart­ment of Defen­se Super­com­pu­ting Resour­ce Cen­ter (DSRC) is plea­sed to announ­ce that it will recei­ve the lar­gest, most capa­ble super­com­pu­ting sys­tem pro­cu­red to date in the Depart­ment of Defen­se (DoD) High Per­for­mance Com­pu­ting Moder­niz­a­ti­on Pro­gram (HPCMP).

At a peak theo­re­ti­cal com­pu­ting capa­bi­li­ty of 12.8 Peta­FLOPS, or 12.8 qua­dril­li­on floa­ting point ope­ra­ti­ons per second, the mul­ti-mil­li­on dol­lar Cray Shas­ta super­com­pu­ter will be the first high-per­for­mance com­pu­ting sys­tem in the HPCMP to pro­vi­de over ten peta­FLOPS of com­pu­ting power to Depart­ment of Defen­se sci­en­tists, rese­ar­chers, and engi­neers. It will be housed and ope­ra­ted at the Navy DSRC at Sten­nis Space Cen­ter in sou­thern Mis­sis­sip­pi.

That pro­jec­ted com­pu­ting capa­bi­li­ty of the new sys­tem puts it in good com­pa­ny: today, it would be ran­ked among the top 25 most capa­ble super­com­pu­ters in the world when com­pa­red to the cur­rent list at, which ranks the world’s most power­ful non-dis­tri­bu­t­ed com­pu­ter sys­tems.

The invest­ment and incre­a­se in super­com­pu­ting power at the Navy DSRC at Sten­nis Space Cen­ter is abso­lute­ly cri­ti­cal to Naval Ocea­no­gra­phy deli­vering future capa­bi­li­ty upgrades to glo­bal and regio­nal oce­an and atmo­s­phe­ric pre­dic­tion sys­tems, to inclu­de later this year the Navy’s first Earth Sys­tems Pre­dic­tion Capa­bi­li­ty,” said Com­man­der, Navy Meteo­ro­lo­gy and Ocea­no­gra­phy Com­mand (NMOC) Rear Adm. John Okon.

Naval Oceanography’s abi­li­ty to be the Depart­ment of Defense’s aut­ho­ri­ta­ti­ve source for cha­rac­te­ri­zing and app­ly­ing data of the phy­si­cal batt­le­space into a decisi­ve advan­ta­ge for naval, joint and allied for­ces hin­ges on the con­ti­nu­al upgrade and advan­ce­ments in high-per­for­mance com­pu­ting from the High Per­for­mance Com­pu­ting Moder­niz­a­ti­on Pro­gram.”

The Cray Shas­ta super­com­pu­ter will fea­ture 290,304 AMD EPYC (Rome) pro­ces­sor cores and 112 NVIDIA Vol­ta V100 Gene­ral-Pur­po­se Gra­phics Pro­ces­sing Units (GPGPUs), inter­con­nec­ted by a 200 giga­bit per second Cray Slings­hot net­work. The sys­tem will also fea­ture 590 total tera­bytes (TB) of memo­ry and 14 peta­bytes (PB) of usable sto­rage, inclu­ding 1 PB of NVMe-based solid sta­te sto­rage.

The Navy DSRC and the HPCMP offer super­com­pu­ting capa­bi­li­ty to the DoD Sci­ence and Tech­no­lo­gy (S&T), Test and Eva­lua­ti­on (T&E), and Acqui­si­ti­on Engi­nee­ring com­mu­nities in sup­port of various rese­arch efforts wit­hin the DoD, inclu­ding air­craft and ship design, envi­ron­men­tal qua­li­ty mode­ling, and other pro­jects to main­tain the U.S. military’s advan­ta­ge over poten­ti­al advers­a­ries.

In par­ti­cu­lar, Navy DSRC super­com­pu­ters sup­port cli­ma­te, wea­ther, and oce­an mode­ling by NMOC, which assists U.S. Navy meteo­ro­lo­gists and ocea­no­graph­ers in pre­dic­ting envi­ron­men­tal con­di­ti­ons that may affect the Navy fleet. Among other sci­en­ti­fic endea­vors, the new super­com­pu­ter will be used to enhan­ce wea­ther fore­cas­ting models; ulti­mate­ly, this impro­ves the accu­ra­cy of hur­ri­ca­ne inten­si­ty and track fore­casts.

The sys­tem is expec­ted to be online by ear­ly fis­cal year 2021.

Our cen­ter is plea­sed to con­ti­nue over twen­ty-five years of excel­lence in pro­vi­ding high­ly avail­ab­le super­com­pu­ters for the Depart­ment of Defen­se,” said Chris­ti­ne Cuic­chi, Direc­tor of the Navy DSRC. “While the new super­com­pu­ter its­elf will be qui­te the work­hor­se, it is com­ple­men­ted by a host of addi­tio­nal tools and ser­vices that the Navy DSRC offers in sup­port of DoD users’ rese­arch acti­vi­ties.

Most peop­le would­n’t expect Mis­sis­sip­pi to be one of the pre­mier loca­ti­ons for lar­ge-sca­le super­com­pu­ting,” said Cuic­chi, “but we are, and this new sys­tem will soli­di­fy our pre­sence in the HPC com­mu­ni­ty.”

Navy DSRC cur­r­ent­ly pro­vi­des almost 12 peta­FLOPS of aggre­ga­te super­com­pu­ting capa­bi­li­ty to the Depart­ment of Defen­se. It is one of five DoD Super­com­pu­ting Resour­ce Cen­ters (DSRCs) in the DoD High Per­for­mance Com­pu­ting Moder­niz­a­ti­on Pro­gram (HPCMP), and is ope­ra­ted by NMOC on behalf of the DoD HPCMP.

About the HPCMP: The HPCMP pro­vi­des the Depart­ment of Defen­se super­com­pu­ting capa­bi­li­ties, high-speed net­work com­mu­ni­ca­ti­ons and com­pu­ta­tio­nal sci­ence exper­ti­se that enab­le DoD sci­en­tists and engi­neers to con­duct a wide-ran­ge of focu­sed rese­arch and deve­lo­p­ment, test and eva­lua­ti­on, and acqui­si­ti­on engi­nee­ring acti­vi­ties. This part­ners­hip puts advan­ced tech­no­lo­gy in the hands of U.S. for­ces more quick­ly, less expen­si­ve­ly, and with grea­ter cer­tain­ty of suc­cess. Today, the HPCMP pro­vi­des a com­pre­hen­si­ve advan­ced com­pu­ting envi­ron­ment for the DoD that inclu­des uni­que exper­ti­se in soft­ware deve­lo­p­ment and sys­tem design, power­ful high per­for­mance com­pu­ting sys­tems, and a pre­mier wide-area rese­arch net­work. The HPCMP is mana­ged on behalf of the Depart­ment of Defen­se by the U.S. Army Engi­neer Rese­arch and Deve­lo­p­ment Cen­ter loca­ted in Vicks­burg, Mis­sis­sip­pi.

Naval Ocea­no­gra­phy has appro­xi­mate­ly 2,500 glo­bal­ly dis­tri­bu­t­ed mili­ta­ry and civi­li­an per­son­nel, who collect, pro­cess and explo­it envi­ron­men­tal infor­ma­ti­on to assist Fleet and Joint Com­man­ders in all war­fa­re are­as to gua­ran­tee the U.S. Navy’s free­dom of action in the phy­si­cal batt­le­space from the depths of the oce­an to the stars.