Nuclear deterrence: Dell ships new Intel Sapphire Rapids for simulations

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Nuclear deterrence: Dell ships new Intel Sapphire Rapids for simulations

Image: US Navy

From 2022, Dell will supply Intel systems with Sapphire Rapids for new US supercomputers that are used for simulations of nuclear weapons. The systems are to be continuously expanded by 2025 and ultimately offer a performance of 40 PetaFLOPS.

The so-called Stockpile stewardship is an important part of the US nuclear program as no new nuclear weapons have been built for nearly three decades. In this respect, the weapon systems, which are at least 29 years old, have to be constantly monitored and serviced; in parallel, it is simulated how the systems still behave, since test data from real nuclear weapons tests have not been available for almost 30 years. The US government spends more than $ 4 billion a year on this area.

In this respect, the 40 million US dollars for a new supercomputer is just a drop in the bucket of the huge budget. Dell will take on the order with new PowerEdge servers and deliver the first systems with Intel Sapphire Rapids from mid-2022. These should be designed for scaling, small nodes with a performance of 1.5 PetaFLOPS should be able to be expanded to up to 40 PetaFLOPS by 2025. In total, the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration’s (DOE / NNSA’s) is upgrading three locations: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and Sandia National Laboratories (SNL).

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