ExaNoDe delivers 3DIC integrated compute element for exascale

ExaNoDe delivers 3DIC integrated compute element for exascale

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Gathering thirteen partners from six European countries, the ExaNoDe (European Exascale Processor & Memory Node Design) project has pioneered 3DIC integration, global shared memory, and a complete software stack to create Europe’s first exascale compute node.
By eeNews Europe

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Partners in the project have built a groundbreaking compute node prototype combining 3DIC with multi-chip-module integration technologies, heterogeneous compute elements with Arm cores and FPGA acceleration and the UNIMEM memory system, all powered by a high-performance, high-productivity software stack.

The ExaNoDe prototype is part of the disruptive change required to provide the necessary compute density and power efficiency for an operational exascale machine. Taking as a basis an innovative interposer developed by CEA, ExaNoDe allows the combination of multiple system-on-chips (SoC) chiplets, forming a three-dimensional integrated circuit (3DIC). This delivers multiple advantages, such as higher chip fabrication yields thanks to the smaller chip size, reduced costs of customization, increased flexibility to slot in compute elements and reduced inter-chip communication distances, resulting in improved energy efficiency.

The researchers involved have modelled an ExaNode with state-of-the-art 7nm Arm-core based chiplets on a silicon interposer and HBM2. Simulations show that such an implementation would enable modular, cost-effective and energy efficient multi-teraflops heterogeneous compute nodes.

The UNIMEM memory system, which was created in the EUROSERVER project and is being brought to scale in the EuroEXA project, allows the creation of shared memory among multiple compute nodes. The UNIMEM shared memory is accessible through a non-coherent global address space, and is made visible to the programmer via a native UNIMEM API, standard MPI-3.0 and GPI-2. Advances in OmpSs-2@Cluster and OpenStream allow programmers to exploit the ExaNoDe architecture through a multi-node task-based programming model. In order to increase the resilience and improve the manageability of the compute node, the software stack also includes virtualization, with check-pointing and virtualization of the UNIMEM capabilities.


Finally, ExaNoDe’s research activities also extend to applications. Several application areas have been selected to ensure broad coverage, including materials science and engineering. So-called ‘mini applications’ – self-contained and based on real-life applications – have been developed and ported to the architecture via the programming models and communication application programming interfaces (APIs). Initial work has been performed to accelerate the key kernels on the compute node’s FPGA logic, and this expertise will be brought to future and ongoing projects such as EuroEXA. ETHZ developed the open source ExaConv convolutional neural network accelerator to accelerate neural network training as a demonstration of heterogeneous integration.

“Affordability and power consumption are the main hurdles for an exascale-class compute node. In the ExaNoDe project, we have built a complete prototype that integrates multiple core technologies: a 3D active interposer with chiplets, Arm cores with FPGA acceleration, a global address space, high-performance and productive programming environment, which will enable European technology to satisfy the requirements of exascale HPC”, commented Denis Dutoit, research engineer at CEA-Leti and the coordinator of ExaNoDe.

EuroEXA project – https://exanode.eu

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