New HPC Cluster Coming Soon - Argon - February 2017

The Argon system is now open to investors and their affiliated users.


Details of the new Argon HPC System are now available below. If you have questions please contact

What is the timeline for the Argon system?

  • December 1, 2016 – Helium HPC Cluster Shut Down
  • December 28, 2016 – Argon HPC Cluster Install Begins (Delayed due to hardware arrival)
  • January 4, 2017 – Last Day Helium Home Accounts Are Available For Data Retrieval
  • January 30, 2017 – Argon HPC Cluster Open For Initial User Testing
  • February 21, 2017 – Argon HPC Cluster Opens to Investors
  • March 14, 2017 – Argon HPC Cluster Generally Available
  • Note: Deployment of the system is taking longer than expected due to issues with equipment delivered by the vendor. We apologize for the delays in entering production and for there being fewer software titles available at system launch.
  • Note: Nvidia P100 accelerators may not be fully functional at launch due to beta firmware.

What is the initial configuration of the Argon cluster?

Overall System Configuration

  • 229 Compute Nodes
  • 6400 Processor Cores
  • 58TB Ram
  • 12 GPU Accelerator Cards
  • 100Gbps Omnipath Network with 5:1 Oversubscription
  • 1TB Home Accounts per User
  • 100TB Shared NFS based Scratch Storage
  • High Performance Distributed Filesystem Planned for Summer 2017

UI and Related Central Queue Resources

  • ~1300 Total CPU Cores
  • 40  256GB Compute Nodes
  • 5  256GB Compute Nodes with Nvidia P100 Accelerators
  • 5  512GB Compute Nodes

Can I still buy compute nodes in the Argon cluster? - Yes, purchases are scheduled to be available through August 15, 2017 at current prices. The available configurations are:

  • Standard Compute Node (128GB, No Accelerator Support) - $5399
  • Mid-Memory Compute Node (256GB, No Accelerator Support) - $5930
  • Standard Compute Node (128GB, Accelerator Support) - $5781
  • Mid-Memory Compute Node (256GB, Accelerator Support) - $6219
  • High Memory Compute Node (512GB, Accelerator Support) - $6804

All Nodes Contain

  • 2 x Xeon E5-2680v4 (28 Cores at 2.4GHz)
  • 1TB SSD
  • 1Gbps Ethernet
  • 100Gbps Omnipath

Accelerator Cards

  • Nvidia K80m – $4529
  • Nvidia P100 - $5890
  • Knights Landing - Not yet available, contact us for details
  • Note: Nvidia consumer GPU cards such as the Titan series are not supported in server systems.
  • Note: If you believe that you will want more than one accelerator card in the future please let us know at time of purchase.

Data Storage

  • Note: Storage servers are not high availability but do have redundant components and are configured using triple parity raid.
  • Per Terabyte Purchase Option: $40/TB/Year/Copy of Data ($80/TB/Year with backups)
  • Dedicated storage server configuration options upon request. Smallest configurations start at 45TB of usable storage space.

If you are interested in purchasing equipment in the Argon system please contact

What is the software stack for Argon? - Argon will run CentOS 7 and use the Sun of Grid Engine scheduler.

What applications will be centrally installed on Argon? - Our goal is to have most of the following packages available at the full launch of the Argon system.

  • R
  • Python
  • Perl
  • wien2k
  • lammps
  • graphviz
  • bcftools
  • samtools
  • ruby
  • copasi
  • tecplot360
  • totalview
  • matlab
  • Ansys
  • AMPL
  • Gaussian
  • SAS
  • Star-CCM+
  • plink
  • NBO
  • turbomole
  • symphony
  • MPI
  • Intel Compilers
  • GCC
  • Nvidia CUDA

Can I request additional software be installed on the Argon system? - Groups or individuals purchasing compute nodes in the system may request additional software now and we will work to install it as time allows. These requests may be made via this form:    or via email to Groups or individuals who have not purchased nodes may request software packages after the Argon system enters full production in February 2017. 

Why is the Helium cluster turned off before the Argon cluster is available? - The physical data center space from Helium is where Argon will be installed meaning it is not possible to run the two systems simultaneously.

Will these activities impact responsiveness of the HPC team? - Yes, while we are leveraging contract labor for parts of the installation the installation of the Argon system is a major project and we do anticipate that we will not be able to respond to questions as quickly as normal.

If I have a Helium or Neon account will I automatically be given an Argon account? - No, you will need to request an Argon account.

How do I request an Argon account? - Once the request form is available it will be linked on this page: