Finding Nemeaux: New Xserve Based HPC At LSU

Louisiana State Universityis Center for Computation & Technology (CCT) and Apple have launched a new high performance computing cluster called Nemeaux. According to High Performance Computing Wire (HPC Wire), the cluster is based on 24 Apple Xserve G5 servers. Nemeaux will be used for both art-related tasks such as rendering, as well as "exploring problems in numerical relativity, fluid dynamics and scientific visualization."

HPC Wire reported that Nemeaux is currently serving as a test-bed for both CCTis Cactus Framework and Appleis Xgrid. In addition, researchers at the university are developing tools to perform distributed audio rendering on the cluster, using multiple computers to analyze, process and generate sound.

"Nemeaux provides a platform for scientists and artists to explore new possibilities," Stephen David Beck, director of the Laboratory for Creative Arts & Technologies, a division of CCT, and professor of composition and computer music told HPC Wire.

It wasnit long ago when the terms high performance computing, and Apple, were never used in the same paragraph, much less the same sentence. All of thatis changed, however, since Apple started using processors from IBM, and started creating hardware -- Xserve and Xserve RAID -- and software -- Xsan and Xgrid -- that make it relatively easy to gang Macs together to form computing clusters.

Virginia Tech was one of the first universities to use Apple hardware to create a high performance computing cluster, but other clusters using Apple technology have since joined the pack.

There is additional information on the LSU cluster at HPC Wireis Web site.