Riding a 100G InfiniBand Backbone, InfiniCortex, the Intercontinental Supercomputing Architecture, Debuts in New Orleans

Obsidian Strategics Enables New Path to Extreme Scale, Allowing Remote International Partners to Natively Combine HPC Assets in a Segmented and Secure Fashion at Unprecedented Speeds

EDMONTON, Alberta, Dec. 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- At Supercomputing 2014, a team led by Singapore's Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*Star) unveiled the InfiniCortex. This ground-breaking demonstration introduced a new architecture designed to meet the challenge of building the next generation of supercomputers. Through the process of this collaboration, the team set records for the longest encrypted InfiniBand™ link running at 100Gbits/s. Obsidian announced today that its Longbow™ InfiniBand range extenders successfully interfaced HPC traffic with 100Gbits/s optical wavelengths, crossing the Pacific on Tata Communication's TGN-IA subsea cable, spanning in excess of 20,000km.

The supercomputer industry today is faced with the challenge of increasing supercomputer performance nearly 100x to ExaScale by 2020.

  • Opening the door for global innovations: The success of the InfiniCortex demonstrated the aggregation of many globally distributed supercomputers into a hive-mind of enormous scale, bringing to light the scalability and lasting value of InfiniBand.
  • Enabling international collaboration: Partners from many entities including Japan's Tokyo Institute of Technology (TITECH), Australia's National Computational Infrastructure (NCI), Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Princeton, Stony Brook and Georgia Institute of Technology realized measured application transfer rates approaching theoretical limits, including:
    • NCI– RDMA-based HPC cloud workflows for intercontinental genetic sequencing
    • TITECH / Georgia Tech– File migration with Lustre and dsync+
    • Princeton Plasma Research Lab / ORNL– Near real-time plasma disruption detection using ADIOS
    • Stony Brook University / ORNL– Automated microscopy image analysis for cancer detection, also using ADIOS
  • Obsidian technology re-defines InfiniBand: Longbow provided hardware-encrypted WAN links for data and system security, resulting in a highly deployable communications fabric suitable for demanding applications in not only scientific computing, but also storage, datacenter, cloud and enterprise environments. The InfiniCortex also spanned three independently managed InfiniBand subnets, natively bridged by Crossbow™ R400 devices and configured and monitored by its enhanced subnet manager, BGFC.

Dr. David Southwell, chief visionary officer, Obsidian Strategics, said: "As data usage continues to escalate, organizations from around the world are looking at new network architectures. Because high throughput efficiencies and deterministic traffic flows are notoriously difficult to achieve at high data rates across long-distance circuits, Obsidian's Longbow devices are a critical enabler in the processing of these extremely large data sets. We are thrilled to see the stunning results from this inaugural demonstration and are proud to have been a part of it."

Dr. Marek Michalewicz, senior director for A*Star CRC said: "I am thrilled and happy with the success of our InfiniCortex demo at SC14. It was an undertaking of enormous complexity, involving some thirty different parties, from international data carriers, national research networks, universities' and labs' research groups and thirteen partner and sponsor vendor companies. We are pleased that all seven applications and the entire InfiniBand network worked perfectly! I'm privileged to be working with an excellent group of technical experts who are dedicated and committed - and I wish to thank them all."

About Obsidian Strategics
Obsidian Strategics™ is the developer of Longbow™ and Crossbow™, a series of InfiniBand products featuring range extension, routing and encryption. Longbow technology allows an InfiniBand fabric - normally a short-range network used in supercomputers and data centres - to be securely extended via optical fiber over global distances. Crossbow technology provides very high performance routing of InfiniBand traffic between many separate subnets, enabling unprecedented scalability and manageability. www.obsidianstrategics.com.