General Studies IIIScience and Tech



The National Supercomputing Mission (NSM) has deployed PARAM Ganga-a High-Performance Computational (HPC) facility at IIT Roorkee, with a supercomputing capacity of 1.66 Petaflops.

About Param Ganga

  • IIT Roorkee has been selected to have a node of the National Supercomputing Mission (NSM) coordinated by CDAC Pune, the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY).
  • PARAM Ganga – High-Performance Computing (HPC) system under the NSM has been established at IIT Roorkee.
  • The supercomputer PARAM Ganga is based on a heterogeneous and hybrid configuration of Intel Xeon Cascade lake processors, and NVIDIA Tesla V100. There are 312 (CPU+GPU+HM) nodes with a total peak computing capacity of 1.67 (CPU+GPU+HM) PFLOPS performance. The cluster consists of compute nodes connected with the Mellanox (HDR) InfiniBand interconnect network. The system uses the Lustre parallel file system and operating system is CentOS 7.x.

When did India initiate its efforts to build supercomputers?

  • India’s supercomputer program was initiated in the late 1980s, when the United States ceased the export of a Cray Supercomputer due to technology embargos.
  • This resulted in India setting up C-DAC in 1988, which in 1991, unveiled the prototype of PARAM 800, benchmarked at 5 Gflops. This supercomputer was the second-fastest in the world at that time.
  • Since June 2018, the USA’s Summit is the fastest supercomputer in the world, taking away this position from China.
  • As of January 2018, Pratyush and Mihir are the fastest supercomputers in India with a maximum speed of Peta Flops.

About National Supercomputing Mission (NSM)

  • Mandate: National Supercomputing Mission (NSM) plans to build and deploy 24 facilities with cumulative compute power of more than 64 Petaflops.
  • Parent Ministry: National Supercomputing Mission (NSM) is being steered jointly by the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeiTY) and the Department of Science and Technology (DST).
  • Implementation: The National Supercomputing Mission (NSM) is being implemented by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore.
  • C-DAC has been entrusted the responsibility to design, development, deployment, and commissioning the supercomputing systems under the built approach of NAM.
  • Under the build approach, C-DAC is building an indigenous supercomputing ecosystem in a phased manner.
  • Performance: Till now C-DAC has deployed 11 systems at IISc, IITs, IISER Pune, JNCASR, NABI-Mohali and C-DAC under NSM Phase-1 and Phase-2 with a cumulative computing power of more than 20 Petaflops.
  • Total 36,00,000 computational jobs have been successfully completed by around 3600 researchers across the nation on the NSM systems to date.
  • Key Developments: Some of the large-scale applications which are being developed under NSM include the following.
  • NSM Platform for Genomics and Drug Discovery.
  • Urban Modelling: Science-Based Decision Support Framework to Address Urban Environment Issues (Meteorology, Hydrology, Air Quality).
  • Flood Early Warning and Prediction System for River Basins of India.
  • HPC Software Suite for Seismic Imaging to aid Oil and Gas Exploration.
  • MPPLAB: Telecom Network Optimization.

What are the phases of the National Supercomputing Mission?

Phase I:

  • In the first phase of the NSM, parts of the supercomputers are imported and assembled in India.
  • A total of 6 supercomputers are to be installed in this phase.
  • The first supercomputer that was assembled indigenously is called Param Shivay. It was installed in IIT (BHU) located in Varanasi.
  • Similar systems, Param Shakti (IIT Kharagpur) and Param Brahma (IISER, Pune) were also later installed within the country.
  • The rest will be installed at IIT Kanpur, IIT Hyderabad and Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Advanced Studies (JNIAS).

Phase II:

  • The supercomputers that are installed so far are about 60% indigenous.
  • The 11 systems that are going to be installed in the next phase will have processors designed by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) and will have a cumulative capacity of 10 petaflops.
  • These new systems are to be constructed more cost-effectively than the previous ones.
  • One of the 11 proposed supercomputers will be installed
  • at C-DAC exclusively for small and medium enterprises so that they can train employees as well as work on supercomputers at a very low cost.

Phase III:

  • The third phase aims to build fully indigenous supercomputers.
  • The government had also approved a project to develop a cryogenic cooling system that rapidly dispels the heat generated by a computing chip. This will be jointly built together by IIT-Bombay and C-DAC.

Source: PIB

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