All day, near the High-Performance booth at HP Discover 2014, there is a shrouded case wrapped with a big red ribbon, similar to what you would see on the “new car” gifts in movies that never happens.
“Wait until the Keynote” says everyone.
During the Keynote, a quick video (less than a minute) was played showing the new system on a platform while new-age fenced arms slowly expanded out, displaying inches of the new system every second. Lots of drama, music, and cinematography as you would see in a Sci-Fi movie.
Apollo. The new system for re-defining high-performancing computer in a small footprint. According to the recent specs for the Apollo 8000 series system, it’s capable of 250 TeraFlops per cabinet using Proliant XL730f server blades. In order to deal with the amount of heat the processors create, water was the medium of choice, as it is far more efficient, and can be used to heat other items such as offices or hot water heaters.
The problem with water, is that it’s messy, doesn’t play well with electricity, and turns metal into rusted rot. So, HP designed a direct thermal transfer (shown below), that takes the heat from the processors and directs it off-card. Once the heat is transferred, the water comes in to cool it (or transfer the heat, if you prefer).
The 8000f chassis itself can hold up to 144 server blades and 8 hot-swappable 10kW power rectifiers in the center. It does require three-phase power, but is more efficient in the long-run. Management includes iLO, cooling sensors, and “System Manager” for overall system monitoring.
This system is indeed a remarkable acheivement. With the “green” movement gaining momentum, and the need for higher compute power in a smaller footprint, the Apollo 8000 seems to fit the bill well. Dont need that much power or water cooling? HP also introduced the Apollo 6000.