New high performance computer to researchers in Norway

The supercomputer will be installed at UiT The Arctic University of Norway by the end of 2016 and will be available to researchers in April 2017.

Why a new supercomputer?

Modern research generates large amounts of data and require very large calculation and storage capacities. It is important for Norwegian researchers to have access to electronic infrastructure at a high international level in order to be competitive, and a number of research groups will benefit greatly from the computational power of the new system. High performance computers are of particular importance for research that requires extensive calculations, such as bioinformatics, materials science, medicine, chemistry, physics, climate research, energy research, astrophysics and linguistics.

The current the national e-infrastructure for research and higher education consists of four computing facilities, physically located at the universities in Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim and Tromsø. This new facility replaces the existing two sites, respectively Hexagon in Bergen and Vilje in Trondheim. The other two systems are expected to be replaced with a new national computing facilitiy in 2018.

Environmentally friendly

An important aspect of this installation is heat recovery. The new supercomputer is able to recover most of the energy used for calculations as hot water that can be utilized for heating the buildings at the university campus in Tromsø. All the electricity used for this machine comes from hydro-electric power plants.

The new supercomputer / technical specifications

The new supercomputer has a computing capacity totalling approximately 260 million CPU hours annually with 1.1 petaflops per second maximum theoretical performance. The life expectancy of the new machine is four years, until 2021.

Main components:

  • 948 Lenovo Next Scale nx360 water-cooled servers.
  • 1896 Intel 16-core 2.10 GHz E5-2683v4 processors.
  • 16 NVIDIA K80 accelerators.
  • 100 Gbps Mellanox EDR high-speed network.
  • 2.45 petabytes DataDirect Network SFA14KE central Lustre-based storage system.

Key figures (approx):

  • Processor Cores: 30,000.
  • Internal Memory: 70 terabytes.
  • Internal disk: 150 terabytes.
  • Central disk: 2.45 petabytes.
  • Theoretical Performance (Rpeak): 1.1 petaflop/s.
  • Annual theoretical energy capture: 2.5 million KWh. (290 kW x 24 x365)
  • Dimensions: 18 cabins (10 meters).


  • Gunnar Bøe, Managing Director UNINETT Sigma2, tel.: (+47) 911 87 850
  • UNINETT Sigma2

Svenn Hansen from SERIT IT (left) and Managing Director of UNINETT Sigma2, Gunnar Bøe, are pleased with signing the agreement.