Since May 2009 Kuberre markets its FPGA-based HANSA system. The information
provided is extremely scant. The company has traditionally been involved in
financial computing and with the rising need for HPC in this sector Kuberre has
built a system that houses 1--16 boards, each with 4 Altera Stratix II FPGAs
and 16 GB of memory in addition to one dual core x86-based board that acts as a
front-end. The host board runs the Linux or Windows OS and the compilers.
For programming a C/C++ or Java API is available. Although Kuberre is almost
exclusively oriented to the financial analytic market, the little material that
is accessible shows that libraries like, ScaLAPACK, Monte-Carlo algorithms, FFTs
and Wavelet transforms are available. For the Life Sciences standard
applications like BLAST, and Smith-Watermann are present. The standard GNU C
libraries can also be linked seamlessly.
The processors are organised in a grid fashion and use a 256 GB distributed
shared cache to combat data access latency. The system comes configured as
having 768 RISC CPUs for what are called "generic C/C++ programs" or as 1536
double precision cores for heavy numerical work. It is possible to split the
system to run up to 16 different "contexts" (reminiscent to Convey's
personalities, see The Convey HC-2). A part of the
machine may be dedicated to a Life Science application where other parts work on
encryption and numerical applications.
Like for the Convey HC-2 it is hardly possible to give performance figures but a
fully configured machine with 16 boards should be able to obtain 250 Gflop/s on
the Linpack benchmark which cannot really be regarded as ''High Performance''
these days. However, it may do very well on specialised workloads.
The material publicly available does not allow to show a reliable block diagram
but this may come about later when the system might be installed at sites
that want to evaluate it.