India Bolsters Space Programme With Accelerated Supercomputer

The SAGA sys­tem, India’s most pow­er­ful super­com­put­er and hold­er of the 86th posi­tion on the Top 500 list, employs NVIDIA GPUs to improve the design and analy­sis of the deliv­ery vehi­cles crit­i­cal to the nation’s space pro­gram.

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Devel­oped by the Indi­an Space Research Orga­ni­za­tion (ISRO), one of the six largest space research agen­cies in the world, the SAGA super­com­put­er is used to tack­le com­plex aero­nau­ti­cal prob­lems.

Har­ness­ing the pow­er of 640 NVIDIA Tes­la GPUs and pro­vid­ing up to 394 ter­aflops of peak per­for­mance, SAGA enables ISRO to accel­er­ate and improve the design and analy­sis of new and exist­ing satel­lite launch vehi­cles by enabling more com­plex and accu­rate design sim­u­la­tions.

“GPUs enabled us to reduce the time to cre­ate, sim­u­late and ver­i­fy a new launch vehi­cle design from weeks to days, while improv­ing the over­all qual­i­ty and dura­bil­i­ty of the design dra­mat­i­cal­ly,” said sources at ISRO. “This lev­el of super­com­put­ing pow­er has made a huge dif­fer­ence in our space pro­gram, by enabling us to con­tin­u­al­ly refine and improve our pre­dic­tion capa­bil­i­ties.”

ISRO lever­ages the SAGA sys­tem and the PARAS-3D appli­ca­tion to run com­pute-inten­sive, detailed com­pu­ta­tion­al flu­id dynam­ics (CFD) sim­u­la­tions that opti­mize the launch vehi­cle design for improved per­for­mance under a range of flow con­di­tions. With GPUs, ISRO is able to run more com­plex sim­u­la­tions 7–8 times faster than with a CPU-based sys­tem, reduc­ing the time to cre­ate, test and final­ize new designs by the same fac­tor. In addi­tion, the high­er com­pute den­si­ty in a GPU based sys­tem enables bet­ter appli­ca­tion scal­a­bil­i­ty while requir­ing a much low­er invest­ment in com­mu­ni­ca­tion infra­struc­ture.

“The Indi­an gov­ern­ment has jumped into glob­al super­com­put­ing race in a big way, with its recent $1 bil­lion pledge to build a net­work of next-gen­er­a­tion, petas­cale-class super­com­put­ers through­out the coun­try,” said Sum­it Gup­ta, Senior Direc­tor, NVIDIA’s Tes­la busi­ness. “India joins the US, Chi­na, Ger­many, Japan, Rus­sia, and oth­er lead­ing nations who are apply­ing super­com­put­ing resources to solve some of the worlds’ most press­ing com­pu­ta­tion­al, sci­en­tif­ic and engi­neer­ing prob­lems.”


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