New ARC Cluster : Huckleberry

ARC released a new cluster named Huckleberry in late 2017. The Huckleberry system, accessed at huckleberry1.arc.vt.edu, was installed with deep learning applications in mind. To this end, it consists of 14 IBM “Minsky” S822LC nodes and NVIDIA's proprietary NVLink interconnect network. This system enables highly parallel and highly distributed workloads. IBM unveiled its deep learning AI toolkit called PowerAI alongside the launch of Minsky nodes that leverage CPUs linked to Power CPUs with NVLink making it possible to have high speed high performance computing. PowerAI is available under /opt/DL in Huckleberry.

Each compute node on Huckleberry (i.e. IBM “Minsky” nodes) consists of :

  • Two IBM Power8 with 10 cores, 8 threads per core and memory bandwidth 115gb/s per socket
  • Four NVIDIA P100 GPUs advertised to have 21 teraFLOPS of 16-bit floating-point performance ideal for deep learning applications deliver high performance, massive parallelism
  • NVIDIA's NVLink technology which provides high bandwidth data transfers between CPUs and GPUs; an improvement over PCI-Express
  • Mellanox EDR Infiniband (100 GB/s) interconnect used to connect compute nodes

The PowerAI toolkit contains Caffe, TensorFlow etc. which are optimized for the Power servers. IBM provides support for it as well.

While the rest of the clusters make use of the PBS batch systems, Huckleberry makes use of the Slurm batch system using the command sbatch.

Individuals may request a Huckleberry account.  Instructors can get set up class accounts for Huckleberry as well.

Winged Insect – Visual Communications Design

The “Wing It” exhibit (both actual and virtual) just won a 2018 SEGD Global Design Merit award!!

The Winged Insect Exhibition is designed by students in Environmental Design and New Media course. Students created multiple virtual versions of The Winged Insects exhibition before holding the exhibition in the actual space. The 3D designs were developed with tools like Sketchup, Maya, and Blender to produce ISO-IEC standard X3D.  The X3D version of the Exhibition allows for multi-stakeholder and multi-platform design presentations through Web3D and Immersive Hyper Cube experience.
Through the X3D version of Winged Insects exhibition in the Hyper Cube students experienced multiple prototypes and changed their design in the virtual space. This is the final design of The Winged Insects exhibition in the Cowgill Hall at Virginia Tech.

Spring 2018 ARC Workshops and Tutorials

ARC will offer many free classes on scientific computing, sponsored by Network Learning Initiatives (NLI) and held in room 1100 Torgersen. NLI encourages you to register for these classes through their web site https://nli.tlos.vt.edu, but unregistered auditors are welcome to sit in.

For a list of dates, times, and titles for the classes, refer to

https://secure.hosting.vt.edu/www.arc.vt.edu/userguide/spring-2018-arc-workshops-and-tutorials/