Meet Athena, CNL’s recently procured, installed and commissioned high-performance computing cluster. At its basic level, Athena is a pool of powerful computers connected together by a high speed, low latency network. Physically, Athena looks like three large ‘fridge size’ cabinets full of computing equipment. With over 3,200 cores (CPUs) and 750 TB of storage space, Athena doubled CNL’s computing capabilities and processing speeds – roughly equalling to what Titan and Minerva – CNL’s former high performance computing resources – were capable of doing together.
The expansion of this computing capability will better position CNL to overcome computing challenges. And it will also enable CNL Science & Technology and technical staff to better respond to commercial opportunities both in Canada and abroad as well as foster collaboration with external organizations. Scientific computing or high-performance computing is an enabling technology in many key areas of interest to CNL. This includes computational fluid dynamic, physics and thermalhydraulics modelling, failure predictions, advanced materials discovery and development, DNA analysis, and much more.
The faster cluster coupled with better infrastructure enables CNL to run more and larger models in a shorter amount of time.
CNL continues to expand our computing capability to meet demand and stay competitive with the industry. Scientific and high-performance computing has become an integral component required for success in most S&T areas of strategic importance to CNL; approximately one third of all CNL Federal Nuclear Science and Technology work is dependent on high performance computing.
Thank you to the set-up, procurement, installation, and administration teams for bringing this new high performance computer to fruition.