Supercomputer maker Cray announced what it calls its last supercomputer architecture before entering the era of exascale computing. It is code-named “Shasta,” and the Department of Energy, already a regular customer of supercomputing, said it will be the first to deploy it, in 2020.
The Shasta architecture is unique in that it will be the first server (unless someone beats Cray to it) to support multiple processor types. Users will be able to deploy a mix of x86, GPU, ARM and FPGA processors in a single system.
Up to now, servers either came with x86 or, in a few select cases, ARM processors, with GPUs and FPGAs as add-in cards plugged into PCI Express slots. This will be the first case of fully native onboard processors, and I hardly expect Cray to be alone in using this design.