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July 2006
Hot topics
French Atomic Energy Authority’s TERA-10 supercomputer – developed with Bull NovaScale servers – is confirmed No.1 in Europe by TOP500’s latest edition

  • TERA-10 is ranked number one in Europe and number five in the world in the 27th TOP500 listing of the world’s supercomputers, published at the International Supercomputer Conference (ISC2006) in Dresden, Germany
  • Installed in 2005, the supercomputer is made up of 544 NovaScale computing nodes and 58 I/O management and system administration nodes, representing over 4,500 Dual-Core Intel® Itanium® 2 ‘Montecito’ processors
  • The new ranking underlines Europe’s return to the fore in the high-performance computing (HPC) technologies that are so strategic in terms of national sovereignty and competitive advantage in business

The 27th edition of the TOP500, listing the world’s 500 most powerful supercomputers confirms TERA-10 – the supercomputer developed by Bull and installed at the French Atomic Energy Authority (CEA1) – as the number one in Europe and number five in the world. The latest version of the list was unveiled in front of the world’s greatest supercomputing experts, meeting in Dresden, Germany for ISC2006.
TERA-10 is used for the Simulation Program run by the CEA’s Military Applications Directorate (CEA/DAM). The program is designed to ensure the continuing effectiveness of the French nuclear deterrent following the cessation of nuclear testing.
TERA-10’s position, as the number one supercomputer in Europe and fifth in the world, confirms Bull’s strategy to concentrate on industry-standard, open technologies. This clearly illustrates Bull’s expertise in complex, large-scale IT architectures.” said Michel Lepert, Bull’s General Manager, Bull Products and Systems.
Designed by Bull, TERA-10 comprises a cluster of 544 NovaScale computing nodes, each featuring eight new-generation Dual-Core Intel® Itanium® processors, code-named ‘Montecito’. The NovaScale servers are interconnected via an ultra high-performance Quadrics QsNet II network, the world leader in supercomputing networks. Overall, TERA-10 provides the processing capacity of 4,532 dual-core processors and 30TB of core memory. The performance of 42.9 Teraflops of power was measured on 4,000 processors, which demonstrates TERA-10’s infrastructure outstanding efficiency.
Over and above the computing power, the implementation of TERA-10 requires enormous storage capacity for the data produced by the Simulation Program. So the TERA-10 configuration also features 56 NovaScale I/O servers managing a PB (one million, billion bytes) of disk space, with 100GB of bandwidth. It also includes two NovaScale system administration servers.
TERA-10 runs Bull’s HPC software platform which most notably features the Linux® operating system and Lustre parallel global file system. The platform is built around a number of Open Source software components that have been fully integrated and optimized by Bull at its HPC Competence Center at Echirolles in France.
The complete TOP500 report is available at

1The CEA – a major player in technology research, development and innovation – operates in three main areas: energy, information technology and healthcare, defence and security, and building on its excellence in fundamental research.

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