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ACISS is composed of 3 kinds of compute nodes, a 400TB IBRIX storage system, and a Voltaire Vantage 8500 10GigE network switch.

 Compute Nodes

The compute nodes are the main workforce for the ACISS machine. There are 3 types of compute nodes which support a heterogenous computing environment to support varied application requirements including high core counts, large memory per node, or GPU accelerators.

Specifications for each ACISS node type.

A basic node (left) a fat node (middle) and a GPU card (right).


The ACISS storage system is based on a high-performance parallel network attached storage (NAS) architecture. The HP Ibrix X9320 Storage Array product provides a flexible solution based on NSF, allowed a large amount of storage to be configured (over 400 TB of useable space). In addition to the NAS storage, one node consisting of 4 TB of block storage was recently purchased. ACISS’s Ibrix currently has 390TB (TB = 2^30 B) of storage available.

The ACISS storage solution delivers scalable read/write I/O performance.


The computational and storage resources of ACISS are connected through a high-speed interconnection network. ACISS employs 10 GigE solution based on a 1-1 non-blocking Voltaire 8500 10 GigE switch that connects all compute nodes and storage fabric, as well as provides a redundant 10 GigE trunk to the UO network backbone (UONET). The switch provides 1:1 nonblocking networking for all 10gig ports, and Vlan segmentation for communication, storage and public-access networks. Additionally, the HP compute nodes and storage infrastructure come with an extra InfiniBand (IB) interface, allowing IB networking upgrades in the future.

The ACISS network is based on a 1-1 non-blocking 10 GigE Voltaire switch.

Computing Center

The University of Oregon has made substantial investments of over $2M in support of ACISS including a full remodel of the Computing Center’s machine room. The machine resides in ACISS-specific cabinetry with a specially designed hot-aisle containment cooling system.

ACISS switch cabinet in the foreground and compute nodes in the background.

The UO Computing Center cooling design (left) and photo of hot-aisle between ACISS cabinets (right).