E4 to Participate in exaFOAM to develop the next generation of CFD codes ready for exascale deployment
E4 Computer Engineering announces its participation to exaFOAM (Exploitation of Exascale Systems for Open-Source Computational Fluid Dynamics by Mainstream Industry), a project co-funded by the European High Performance Computing (EuroHPC) Joint Undertaking to transitioning CFD from its current near-petascale performance towards (pre)-exascale deployment and drive innovation in efficiency and usability of high-end HPC systems.
Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) has become ubiquitous as a design and analysis tool across several industries, being used by an estimated 10,000+ organisations and 100,000+ users. The algorithmic aspect is known, well established and universally applied. However, continued and widespread exploitation in the next decade and beyond is hampered by performance scaling bottlenecks on massively, exascale-class parallel HPC (High Performance Computing) systems, because this tool is currently not taking full advantage of the recent major developments in High Performance Computing.
The objectives of exaFOAM are transitioning the leading open-source CFD application OpenFOAM® from its current near-petascale performance towards pre-exascale and exascale deployment. To overcome the current scaling bottlenecks, exaFOAM will identify and implement algorithm improvements to enhance HPC scalability, identify and realize engineering design/analysis process including pre-processing, post-processing and I/O, provide a complete toolset for performance and scalability measures across all HPC platform-flavours. These objectives will result in an application promoting European leadership in industrial areas where CFD is a key technological enabler (e.g. aerospace, power generation, automotive, disaster prevention). Beyond consolidating the position of European organisations at the leading edge of exploitation of CFD for industrial use, exaFOAM will apply a consistent co-design approach matching computational performance with computational energy efficiency (Energy to Solution), to achieve an application enabling the analysis of high resolution, multi-physics models within an environmentally friendly approach.
These objectives will be pursued via an open-source CFD code using open-source tools to guarantee that the technologies advances realised in the project will be readily accessible to the European academic institutions, research & development establishments, and industrial enterprises, and being easily verifiable through comparisons and validation with already established, well understood and license-based commercial codes.
Within exaFOAM, E4 Computer Engineering will co-design, build and make available to the developers different homogeneous and heterogeneous architectures, and the performance behaviour of these architectures will be characterized using micro-benchmarks provided by the developers of the numerical kernels to validate use cases, algorithmic approaches and numerical methods. Three different levels of analyses will be taken into account: at the core level, at the accelerator level and at the single node and multiple nodes level. The results of the use cases on different architectures will provide insight on the impact of the architecture in the performance, how to benefit from each architecture, which are their strengths and weaknesses, and which is the most suitable architecture depending on the characteristics of the use case.
In addition to the enabling to assess the impact of the architecture on the application, E4 will also compile and maintain a set of best practices and guidelines to develop, run, and profile exaFOAM, gather the co-design insight obtained and make it available to system software developers (i.e., parallel programming models and resource managers), to system administrators and to computer architects to enable a consistent co-design development process. The intended results will be two-fold; on the one hand, it will provide guidelines to developers on recommended code improvements based on the findings of the analyses and on the other hand it will inform the designers of future HPC systems on the most suitable characteristics of different architectures to speed up the kind of workloads at study.
exaFOAM will also provide valuable data to the co-design and development team of the European Process Initiative, of which E4 is a member, and constitutes a testbed for the processors developed within EPI.
The partners will constantly upload the contents on the website https://exafoam.eu/
Cosimo Gianfreda, CTO of E4 Computer Engineering: “Over the years, E4 has pursued the strategy to be at the leading edge of the technology enabling the competitiveness of industry. Our products have been designed taking into account the requirements of the end users and with the goal to make these systems user-friendly while providing top performance at the lowest TCO. Participating and actively contributing in exaFOAM represent a further step in that strategy and enables the testing of innovative technologies with the objective to achieve a significant leap in developing high-tech and energy frugal solutions.”
“exaFOAM is both a technological challenge and a significant opportunity to develop new products to better serve the needs of our customers. The technological challenges have always been addressed by the E4 R&D Lab, where we test on a daily basis new equipment and new components. E4 will bring this know-how and expertise in exaFOAM within a consistent co-design approach. The expertise of our team will be applied in the development of homogeneous and heterogeneous architectures, which will be thoroughly validated with the kernels provided by the developers in a controlled environment.”, says Daniele Gregori, Scientific Coordinator of E4.
OpenFOAM® is a Trademark of OpenCFD Ltd, an affiliate of ESI Group.”
Know more: https://exafoam.eu/