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Dialing it in: A Year of Tuning the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center. Aaron Andersen, Deputy Director of Operations, National Center for Atmospheric Research(NCAR). NCAR ’ s Founding Mission.

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Dialing it in a year of tuning the ncar wyoming supercomputing center

Dialing it in: A Year of Tuning the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center

Aaron Andersen, Deputy Director of Operations, National Center for Atmospheric Research(NCAR)


NCAR Supercomputing Center’s Founding Mission

“… to provide, or arrange for provision of facilities for the scientific community as a whole whose initial cost and upkeep lie beyond the capability of individual universities or research groups.”

Preliminary Plans for a National Institute for Atmospheric Research,

1959, NCAR Blue Book


History of Computing at NCAR Supercomputing Center

Return of Liquid Cooling

Water

Warm Water

FR3

Exotic Cooling

Freon R-22

Fluorinert

Water


  • Key to Optimum Performance (Three M Supercomputing Center’s)

    • Monitoring

    • Measurement

    • Maintenance

  • Infrastructure Support Group – Cheyenne

    • Electricians

    • Mechanics

    • Building Automation Controls

    • HVAC Technician

  • Commissioning Agent

    • Measurement & Verification 12 months post completion


Tuning the Facility – Student Interns Supercomputing Center

  • Clair Christofersen - 2012

    • University of Miami Ohio

    • BS Mechanical Engineering – Applied Math

    • Air Flow Modeling (CFD Analysis)

  • Jason Jones - 2012

    • Clemson University -> Georgia Tech

    • BS Mechanical Engineering

    • Air Flow, Water Flow and Total Energy

  • Ademola Olarinde - 2013

    • Texas A&M Kingsville

    • MS Mechanical Engineering


65F (18.3 C) Degree Chilled Water Supercomputing Center

Evaporative Solution


Liquid cooling ashrae 2011 guidelines
Liquid Cooling – ASHRAE 2011 Guidelines Supercomputing Center

121 hrs

1.38%

8639 hrs

98.62%


Characterize Building Response Supercomputing Center


Mechanical load in winter
Mechanical Load in Winter Supercomputing Center

  • Saw an increase in mechanical consumption in winter months

  • Energy Recovery Heat Pumps consuming way more electricity than expected

  • Why do we care?

    • $5000 per month

  • What is the root cause?


Root cause
Root Cause Supercomputing Center

  • Heat Rejection from Yellowstone is too low 1.2MW vs. 4MW Design

  • Significantly greater heating demand from the building during winter months

  • Commissioning Agent identified the same problem and possible culprit, large Air Handling Units


Why this matters
Why This Matters Supercomputing Center


Other Issues Supercomputing Center

  • UPS Efficiency

    • Only Critical Systems are Covered on UPS

      • Disk

      • Network

      • AuthN/AuthZ

      • Login

      • Management

    • Low load causes low efficiency

    • Firmware upgrade moves UPS efficiency from 70% ~ 95%

  • Maintenance really matters

    • Cleaning strainers improve pump energy by 20 KW

    • More frequent maintenance than recommended

  • Water Usage

    • Zero Blow down for Cooling Tower saving 40%

    • Negotiated reduction in Sewer cost ~$2500/month


PUE Trend Since Startup Supercomputing Center



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