Swiss National Supercomputing Centre (CSCS) is upgrading its Piz Daint supercomputer with NVIDIA Tesla K20X GPUs, with the assistance of Cray, the supercomputer company. After its upgrade, Piz Daint will be the first petascale supercomputer in Switzerland.
This announcement was made at the keynote address by NVIDIA's CEO at GTC 2013 and we managed to get more details from the company after his address. The Tesla K20X GPU marks an improvement over the Tesla K20; although they share the same NVIDIA Kepler GK110 GPU, the Tesla K20X chip sports more CUDA cores at 2,688 than the K20's 2,496 CUDA cores. The Tesla K20X features 6GB of GDDR5 video memory, with a 250GB/s memory bandwidth. Upon the upgraded supercomputer's commission, Piz Daint will operate COSMO, a weather simulation program that drives seven major weather services, and is also used by approximately fifty research institutions for their HPC needs.
COSMO is expected gain up to three times for key modules' performances due to the presence of its new Tesla GPUs. It is also expected to more accurately predict the weather for the Swiss Alps with more simulations and at a higher resolution at up a unit area of one square kilometer. NVIDIA also shared that the COSMO application is based on the OpenACC standard and CUDA framework to take advantage of the strengths of GP-GPU computing for its weather simulation requirements.