TH-1: China’s first petaflop supercomputer

Xuejun Yang, Xiangke Liao, Weixia Xu, Junqiang Song, Qingfeng Hu, Jinshu Su, Liquan Xiao, Kai Lu, Qiang Dou, Juping Jiang, Canqun Yang
School of Computer Science, National University of Defense Technology, Changsha 410073, China
Frontiers of Computer Science in China, Volume 4, Number 4, 445-455, 2010


   title={TH-1: China’s first petaflop supercomputer},

   author={Yang, X. and Liao, X. and Xu, W. and Song, J. and Hu, Q. and Su, J. and Xiao, L. and Lu, K. and Dou, Q. and Jiang, J. and others},

   journal={Frontiers of Computer Science in China},







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In recent years, heterogeneous systems and cooperative computing have become popular research directions in the field of high performance computing. With fast scaling of the size of high performance computer systems, problems such as power consumption and reliability come to the forefront. The aim of high performance computing has thus shifted from merely seeking peak performance to comprehensively pursuing high efficiency, which takes into consideration many factors including performance, cost, power, reliability and so on. A heterogeneous computing system consisting of general-purpose CPU(s) and special-purpose accelerator(s) features high performance, lower power consumption and low cost, etc. Hence, it has already become the mainstream in the field of high performance computing. However, such systems still face many challenges and problems, for example, programmability and reliability. In this paper, we firstly analyze the main challenges facing heterogeneous computing systems. Then, we introduce the architecture of the first petaflop computing system in China, the Tianhe-1 (TH-1) heterogeneous system, including its hardware/software interface and interconnect network. During development of the TH-1 system, several challenges were encountered; research into the solutions of these challenges is subsequently presented.
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