Affordable High Powered Clustered Computing for Aerospace Simulation. G.U. Aero Report 9911

McMillan, W., Woodgate, M., Richards, B. E., Gribben, B.J., Badcock, K.J., Masson, C.A. and Cantariti, F. (1999) Affordable High Powered Clustered Computing for Aerospace Simulation. G.U. Aero Report 9911. Technical Report. Department of Aerospace Engineering, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

Motivated by a lack of sufficient local and national computing facilities for computational fluid dynamics simulations, the Affordable Systems Computing Unit (ASCU) was established to investigate low cost alternatives. The options considered have all involved cluster computing, a term which refers to the grouping of a number of components into a managed system capable of running both serial and parallel applications. Past work by the Unit has demonstrated the significant improvement in the efficiency of a Network of Workstations when management software is employed to scavenge spare cycles and schedule tasks, and has also investigated the use of a managed network for parallel CFD. The present work aims to extend this effort to a higher performance cluster based on commodity processors used for dedicated batch processing. The performance of the cluster has proved to be extremely cost effective, producing a 3 Gigaflops plus peak performance for less than 25K U.K. pounds sterling at current market prices. The experience gained on this system in terms of single node performance, message passing and parallel performance will be discussed. In particular, comparisons with the performance of other systems will be made. A large scale CFD simulation achieved using the new cluster will be presented to demonstrate the potential of commodity processor based parallel computers for aerodynamic simulation.

Item Type:Research Reports or Papers (Technical Report)
Status:Published
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Richards, Professor Bryan and Woodgate, Dr Mark
Authors: McMillan, W., Woodgate, M., Richards, B. E., Gribben, B.J., Badcock, K.J., Masson, C.A., and Cantariti, F.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Aerospace Sciences
Publisher:Department of Aerospace Engineering, University of Glasgow
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 1999 Department of Aerospace Engineering, University of Glasgow
Publisher Policy:Reproduced with the permission of the Department

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