TPAC recently launched 4 compute nodes with the new Intel Phi Processor, code name ‘Knights Landing’ (KNL). This gives local researchers the ability to use 256 cores of the new architecture.
Intel Xeon Phi KNL processors feature the second generation of Intel’s Many Integrated Core (MIC) architecture. Each processor features integrated on-package memory for higher memory bandwidth and include up to 72 cores based on the Intel x86 architecture.
Each CPU core has 2 x AVX-512 vector units (512-bit), so they can do a large number of parallel operations each cycle. KNL also has 16GB of MCDRAM (multi-channel DRAM), which runs at over 400GBs (this is around 4-5 times faster than an equivalent Xeon CPU).
A single-socket KNL CPU easily delivers around 2TFLOPs (or 3TFLOPs for the higher-clocked variants), so they’re quite fast. Each CPU has 4-threads per CPU so a single socket delivers 256 threads of execution. KNL CPU’s deliver this with clock speeds well under traditional Xeon’s frequencies.
The KNL processors will be critical in taking research requiring fast throughput to RAM to the next level, and TPAC will be assisting researchers in code adjustments to talk advantage of these new CPU’s.
TPAC can’t wait to see what this new architecture will allow researchers to achieve.