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Workstations Accelerate Engineering

The WhisperStation-Maximus engineering workstation. Image courtesy of Microway Inc.

The WhisperStation-Maximus, says Microway Inc. (Kingston, MA), combines the visualization and interactive design capability of the NVIDIA Maximus technology with the high-performance computing capacity of NVIDIA Tesla K20 GPUs (graphics processing units) in a single, quiet workstation that gives you “bleeding-edge performance.” In a related announcement, Microway released an updated version of its NumberSmasher 2U GPU server with four Tesla Kepler GPU accelerators.

The WhisperStation-Maximus is certified for NVIDIA Maximus 2.0 technology and deploys with single or dual Intel Xeon multi-core processors. With a WhisperStation equipped with Maximus technology, you can keep working with your CATIA, PTC/Creo, and SolidWorks design application while simultaneously executing structural or fluid dynamics analysis with applications such as Abaqus and ANSYS Mechanical or creating photorealistic renderings with applications such as 3ds MAX and Bunkspeed. Related versions of the WhisperStation-Maximus provide similar horsepower for media applications such as Adobe Creative Suite and mathematics such as Matlab.

Inside the WhisperStation-Maximus, the Tesla companion processor automatically performs the compute-intensive operations associated with rendering or engineering simulations, which frees up CPU resources to handle other tasks such as I/O and multitasking. This, in turn, enables the NVIDIA Quadro GPU to be dedicated to powering full-performance interactive design. The effect of these combined resources enables simulations to run while models are tweaked, eliminating the delays and downtime waiting for the simulation results.

The WhisperStation-Maximus engineering workstation. Image courtesy of Microway Inc.

WhisperStation-Maximus workstations for engineering environments employ NVIDIA Quadro series graphics accelerators and Tesla K20 GPUs. The NVIDIA Tesla K series, which is based on the company’s Kepler high-performance computing architecture and powered by NVIDIA’s CUDA parallel computing model, include performance-enhancing technologies like Dynamic Parallelism and Hyper-Q. The former allows the GPU to operate more autonomously from the CPU by generating new work for itself at run-time from inside a kernel. Hyper-Q CUDA technology enables multiple CPU threads or processes to launch work on a single CPU thread.

A top-of-the line WhisperStation-Maximus workstation comes with high-end NVIDIA Quadro K5000 graphics, 128GB DDR3-1600Mhz memory, and dual 2.6GHz Intel Xeon E5-2670 CPUs (16 cores). For less demanding environments, a version with a single 3.6GHz Intel Xeon E5-1620 CPU (4 cores), mid-range NVIDIA Quadro K2000 graphics, and 32GB DDR3-1600MHz memory is available.

Microway’s NumberSmasher server series is described as offering increased GPU density for the datacenter. They come fully integrated with up to four Tesla K-family GPUs and Intel E5-2600 series Xeon CPUs, high speed DDR3-1600 memory, and high speed interconnects, including InfiniBand. Cluster management software is provided and installed at no extra charge on multiple servers. Additional features include redundant power, 8x 3.5-in. hard drives, and hardware RAID support.

“With speedups from 3x to 100x on over one hundred popular applications, scientists and engineers are leveraging GPUs for increased computational power,” said Stephen Fried, Microway’s president and CTO, in a press statement. “Providing faster and more accurate results, Microway’s Tesla-based servers and workstations are the ideal foundation for high-performance computing workloads including climate and weather modeling, CFD, CAE, computational physics, biochemistry simulations, and computational finance.”

For more information Microway’s WhisperStation-Maximus, click here.

Download the WhisperStation-Maximus data sheet.

Go here for more on NumberSmasher 2U GPU Servers.

Go here for more on NVIDIA Quadro graphics accelerators.

See why DE’s editors selected WhisperStation-Maximus workstations from Microway as their Pick of the Week.

Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company’s website.

About Anthony J. Lockwood

Anthony J. Lockwood is Digital Engineering's Editor-at-Large. Contact him via de-editors@digitaleng.news.