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QPACE - Quantum Chromodynamics Parallel Computing on the Cell

QPACE  Installation of 4 racksCopyright: FZ Jülich

QPACE Rack with nodecardsCopyright: FZ Jülich

QPACE Switch at topCopyright: FZ Jülich

QPACE Cabling insideCopyright: FZ Jülich

QPACE SystemCopyright: FZ Jülich

QPACE (Quantum Chromodynamics Parallel Computing on the Cell) is a massively parallel and scalable computer architecture optimized for lattice quantum chromodynamics (LQCD). It has been developed in cooperation between several academic institutions (SFB TR 55 under the leadership of the University of Regensburg) and the IBM development laboratory in Böblingen, Germany.

This system was taken out of operation on 4 October 2016. It will be replaced by a new modern and more energy-efficient system - called QPACE3 - in the last quarter of 2016.

The QPACE system is available for selected QCD projects.

Hardware Characteristics
  • 4 Racks with 32 backplanes x 32 nodecards (total 1024)

    • Nodecard: 1 IBM PowerXCell 8i processor plus 1 FPGA-based network processor
    • Processors: 1024 PowerXCell 8i (8192 cores)
    • Overall peak performance: 100 Teraflops
    • Main memory: 4 TB (aggregate)

    • Network: Three-dimensonal torus (6 GB/s)
    • Network processor: FPGA-based

    • Power consumption: 140 kW (aggregate)
    • Power efficiency: 723 Megaflops/W (#1 Green500, SC09)

    • Operating system: Scientific Linux 5.3

  • 1 Login/Master node IBM e1350

    • Processortype: quad core Intel Xeon 1.6 GHz
    • Processors: 2 (8 cores)
    • Main memory: 2 Gbytes
    • Disk capacity for user data: 72 TB
    • Operating system: Scientific Linux 5.3

    • Internet address:

For more information refer to

QPACE - the Most Energy-Efficient Supercomputer Today,
      JSC News No. 180, Dec. 2009
More than powerful! German Research Computer QPACE is the most energy efficient in the world,
      Press release of QPACE partners, Nov. 2009