To effectively coordinate the activity, it is broken down into two phases, followed by a dismantling:
Phase One: Computer Selection and Procurement Phase (Jul. 2007 – Dec. 2011).
Phase Two: Computer Operation Phase (Jan. 2012 – Dec. 2016).
Decommission: Dismantling of computer equipment (beginning of 2017).
Phase One :
The goal of Phase One is to set up the supercomputer and the associated peripheral equipment (including a data storage system and a visualisation system) in the CSC&REC Building located in the Rokkasho BA site and to commission the equipment in order to get ready to start Phase Two (operation).
It is important to involve early in the process the fusion community, in order to ensure that the appropriate codes are developed for the simulation and modelling of ITER, of the other fusion experiments, and for the design of DEMO and future fusion power plants.
To take into account the needs of the users, Special Working Group (SWG-1) was set up to recommend target technical specifications for the IT equipment and associated services.
The SWG-1 started in 2008 with the missions of defining the areas of applications, drawing up the actual minimum expected performance, assisting the procuring Implementing Agency (IA) in a market research, selecting benchmark codes, assessing the performance of the benchmark codes on candidate High Performance Computing (HPC) systems, reviewing the technical specifications for the HPC formulated by the procuring IA, defining user requirements for maintenance, operation and technical support, and monitoring the acceptance tests and the early operating phase of the HPC system. In 2012, considering the usefulness of the contributions of SWG-1 during the early operation phase, it was proposed to extend the mission of SWG1 to continue to represent the needs of the users of CSC in the EU and JA fusion communities.
The Procurement Arrangement for the supply of a supercomputer and peripheral equipment was signed in 2010, and the contracts for the supply of the equipment, and operation and maintenance were signed in March 2011. Other Procurement Arrangements were signed to take care of the various interfaces. The main task of the EU-IA is to procure the supercomputer, the peripheral equipment and the operation and maintenance associated services. The main task of JA-IA is to prepare interfaces for the installation of the equipment and to contribute to the seamless integration of the IT equipment and services in the International Fusion Energy Research Centre, in particular by providing support for the interface with the users. For this purpose, the two agencies have conducted intensive preparation work.
In order to prepare the operation phase, the second Special Working Group (SWG-2) established in 2011 the project selection procedures, user utilisation rules, and the role of Standing Committee to preside the process. The Standing Committee was established accordingly in 2011. Its role includes promoting the lighthouse projects, making calls for proposals, selecting the projects from the proposals by the peer review, allocating the computational resources to the selected projects, evaluating the performed projects, making a written summary report of the call, and encouraging the dissemination of results.
Fusion for Energy took ownership of the super computer systems upon the completion of the "Ready to run acceptance tests" in December 2011 as defined in the Procurement Plan of Procurement Arrangement for the supply of the supercomputer and peripheral equipment for the IFERC project (CSC sub project). The supercomputer is named Helios and it has a peak performance of more than 1.5 Petaflop/s.
Phase Two :
The "ready to run" acceptance of Helios marked the end of Phase One and the beginning of phase Two.
The goal of Phase Two is the effective operation of Helios and its sharing by the users. Phase Two started on schedule in January 2012.
In the first quarter of 2012, the operation of Helios has been dedicated to four "lighthouse projects". Since then and until the end of 2016, Helios is running in normal operation as defined by SWG-2. In 2013, under the agreement of SWG-1, an increase of the memory capacity of the login nodes and various small enhancements have taken place to improve the operation of Helios.
In the first quarter of 2014, new nodes containing Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors were installed, increasing the total computing capacity by more than 200 Teraflop/s peak. Another upgrade was done in the first quarter of 2016 with additional nodes equipped with NVidia K80 GPU (35 Teraflop/s peak in total). The purpose of these two complementary upgrades is to help the fusion community to prepare for the next generation of supercomputers. These two enhancements are under the management of both IAs.
The dismantling of Helios is planned for the 1st semester of 2017.
Major Milestones for CSC Coordination
|Completion of CSC set-up
|End of operation
|Final report on operation and support
|Final report on simulation projects