A Platform System of Special Purpose Computers for Various Kinds of Chemical Simulations

Tohru SASAKIa* and Kazuaki MURAKAMIb

aA-Priori Microsystems, Inc.
236 KBIC 308-10 Ogura, Saiwai-ku, Kawasaki, Kanagawa 212-0054, Japan
bGraduate school of Information Sciences and Electrical Engineering, Kyushu University
6-10-1 Hakozaki, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka 812-8581, Japan

(Received: July 4, 2005; Accepted for publication: November 7, 2005; Published on Web: December 15, 2005)

In the development of special purpose computers for scientific calculation with special hardware, including special purpose LSI, for some heavy load processes (hot spots), the hardware design and system debugging often become serious bottlenecks of the development process. We took a software/hardware co-design approach to improve turnaround time. At first we designed the platform architecture (EHPC platform) as the base system, and we developed a prototype system based on the platform architecture. The prototype has a large number of general purpose CPUs instead of special purpose LSIfs and can emulate the functions of the LSI with the firmware on the CPU. In the next step we developed the system with special purpose LSI. Then we have developed some special purpose computers for Molecular Orbital Calculation (GAMESS, Fragment MO), Density Functional Theory (Car-Parrinello, DV-Xalpha), Computational Fluid Dynamics (GSMAC-FEM). In this paper, we introduce the EHPC architecture and show implementations of some application programs on the architecture.

Keywords: Parallel processing, Special purpose computer

Abstract in Japanese

Text in Japanese

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