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World’s first bicycle-powered supercomputer to decipher the genome on Sunday
An interesting way to illustrate the possibility of reducing the power consumption of modern supercomputers came up with SiCortex. Its Linux cluster will be powered by electricity generated by a team of cyclists during a demonstration this Sunday in Los Angeles.
Powering a system called the SC648, which performs complex data analysis at billions of calculations per second, will require the concerted effort of cyclists who sit on eight stationary bicycles with generators (260 watts each).
Rising power consumption is one of the most challenging HPC issues, often referred to as “supercomputing”. Supercomputers generate a lot of heat, so energy is needed to power not only themselves, but also powerful cooling systems. The demand for energy has grown so quickly and on such a scale that, according to the source, some power plants are forced to limit the amount of electricity supplied to computing centers. The figures illustrating the situation can be found in one of our past materials. The seriousness of the situation is evidenced by the fact that IBM has decided to spend a billion dollars to improve the energy efficiency of the computer center.
SiCortex systems are said to be engineered to maximize performance while minimizing power consumption.
To show that a supercomputer powered by muscle power is capable of solving serious problems, the organizers of the demonstration chose a real genetic analysis program for the SC648 for the benefit of the United States Department of Agriculture.