Never a Dull Moment in HPC – Trend Report

young man looking for a way out of a boring job

When one of my friends asked me on Saturday night what I like about my job, I started off by saying that “there is never a dull moment in HPC. The computing landscape is constantly changing, the HPC ecosystem collaborations are so numerous and intriguing, and the strategic/economic value of HPC for simulation has never been greater” (or: relevance of HPC for organizations to become more competitive is so compelling).

All of this was very evident at last week’s ISC conference — one of world’s largest HPC events — drawing this year over 2,800 attendees from 56 countries. Let me share with you a few exciting HPC trends observed during this conference.

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Enterprise Simulation on the Public Cloud: Why Now?

ansys-enterprise-cloudToday, we announced our new ANSYS Enterprise Cloud solution, a combined service and software solution designed to help our global accounts move simulation into the public cloud. Based on my own discussions with customers, the solution is well-matched to current trends and business challenges. Let me explain. Continue reading

Accelerate Mechanical Solutions with Intel® Xeon Phi™

intel xeon phi coprocessorRegarding high performance computing (HPC), there are numerous improvements introduced into ANSYS Mechanical APDL16.0. However, I would like to focus this post on a feature that demonstrates the technological leadership of our company. ANSYS Mechanical APDL 15.0 was the first commercial FEA software product to support the Intel® Xeon Phi™ coprocessor. In ANSYS Mechanical APDL 16.0, we extend support for Xeon Phi hardware to virtually all users. The Xeon Phi coprocessors can now be used on either Linux or Windows, as well as with shared-memory parallel (SMP) and distributed-memory parallel (DMP). Continue reading

Supercomputing Milestones via Partnerships

In a previous blog, I was expressing our privilege of having a strong HPC technology partnership with NVIDIA. Earlier this week, we announced a supercomputing milestone of scaling to 36,000 cores with fluid dynamics simulations being achieved thanks to a strategic partnership with the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA). Now, you may wonder what the relevance of this achievement is for you when you don’t have access to a supercomputer. Continue reading

ANSYS on the Cloud? Making Remote Visualization Work

Increasingly, we’re hearing from ANSYS customers who are interested in running simulation on the cloud. Along with enthusiasm for elastic capacity, we also hear a lot of questions about feasibility. One set of these questions centers around the challenge of moving big simulation datasets between the end-user desktop and the cloud computing engine. Our response has been “don’t move the data, analyze it on the cloud”. And that leads to the next question:  “Can I run ANSYS on the cloud, and still maintain good interactive GUI and graphics performance?” Continue reading

Six Myths of High-Performance Computing (Part 2)

In the first part of this two-part post about high-performance computing, I already addressed three commonly-held myths associated with HPC. Now I’ll address three myths that are related to particular concerns about HPC adoption.

Myth #4: “Without internal IT support, HPC cluster adoption is undoable” Continue reading

Shorter Design Cycles and Multiple Iterations Within Easy Reach

You’ve heard all the talk about simulation-based design. You’ve listened to colleagues— maybe even some of your competitors — wax on about how doing robust simulation studies early on in the design cycle leads to more and better product ideas while also optimizing use of materials. In fact, you’re sold on the need to embrace advanced analysis, but you just don’t see how it’s feasible given the perceived complexity and cost of the simulation software — not to mention, the high-powered workstation gear. Continue reading

Six Myths of High-Performance Computing

six myths of high performance computingLooking back at my notes from conversations with many engineers during our recent ANSYS Convergence Conferences, I must admit that I still came across some myths and misconceptions about high-performance computing (HPC) for engineering simulation. Let me share six really striking ones with you:

  1. HPC is available on supercomputers only
  2. HPC is only useful for CFD simulations
  3. I don’t need HPC – my job is running fast enough
  4. Without internal IT support, HPC cluster adoption is undoable
  5. Parallel scalability is all about the same, right?
  6. HPC software and hardware are relative expensive

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Ocean Waves – A Nightmare for Offshore Structures

You may have heard about the grounding of an Alaskan oil rig in January, 2013. The 28,000-tonne rig was pushed toward the shore by waves up to 35 feet and winds up to 62 mph, dragging its main towing vessel and a tug behind it. There have been several such oil rig incidents over the past few decades. The below image shows the failure of an another oil rig platform due to extreme wave forces. A huge wave hitting the offshore platform leads to high wave impact loads that can eventually result in significant platform damage and collapse. These incidents can cause fatalities and damages that can cost hundreds of millions of dollars. Continue reading

The Future of Simulation via HPC

The What-If studies that our software performs go a long way toward influencing future product development. With tons of features and their resulting design complexity, short development cycles, and consumer/regulatory demand for safety, innovative products call for computing tools — and most people think of CAD and CAE. The silent partner in this mix is the hardware and its ability to quickly and accurately perform the calculations.

Over the past few decades, engineering simulation providers have satisfied demanding design requirements by expanding and deepening their multiphysics capabilities. Now we can imagine what if … and we can conduct studies to test what if … But the truth is that any given simulation tool paired with the best hardware platform is no longer a recipe to fast, reliable solutions. The simulation tool itself must be designed to reap the hardware’s full potential, such as highly scalable and distributed HPC environments. Continue reading