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Bull launches the bullx B510 series: the new generation of ultra-dense Petascale supercomputers

  • The bullx B510 series delivers twice as much processing power and memory speed as the previous generation
  • It features the Intel® Xeon® E5 processors (Sandy Bridge)
  • Systems from the bullx B510 series have already been chosen for major large-scale data centers

Paris, November  16, 2011 -

Bull is today unveiling its bullx B510 series of blade computers: the latest generation of the bullx family which, since its introduction in 2009, has achieved growing success among the business and scientific communities. The bullx B510 blade series is designed for systems featuring anything from a small number of processing nodes right through to large supercomputers delivering several Petaflops of power. The bullx B510 is already being used at the heart of two Petascale systems: the CURIE supercomputer installed at the TGCC (Très Grand Centre de Calcul or very large-scale computing center) in France and the Helios supercomputer in Rokkasho, Japan, run by F4E (Fusion for Energy) as part of the ITER project.

Designed by Bul's Extreme Computing R&D teams, the bullx B510 effectively combines high levels of eco-efficiency, ultra-high density and ultra-high performance. It offers twice the processing power of the previous generation and ensures optimum power consumption for maximum density.

37 Teraflops in a single rack: 100 times greater density in just five years

Based on twin-socket processing nodes grouped into pairs within the blades, the bullx B510 blade series delivers peak performance of over 37 Teraflops per rack thanks to:

  • The use Intel® Xeon® ProcessorE5 family
  • Its extremely high memory capacity, of up to 256 GB per blade
  • Totally non-blocking InfiniBand® QDR or FDR connectivity.

By way of comparison - and proof positive of the incredible progress in High-Performance Computing (HPC) technologies - just five years ago, producing 37 Teraflops of power would have required over a hundred racks.

Protecting investments, through total compatibility with the previous generation

The new bullx B510 blades are designed to integrate seamlessly into existing bullx blade chassis.
This means supercomputers already equipped with bullx blades can take full advantage of the power and density of the new generation systems.

Pascal Barbolosi, Vice-President of Extreme Computing at Bull, commented: "The new generation of bullx blades - which are already at the heart of two Petascale systems - clearly illustrates Bull's expertise in high-power computing. They not only demonstrate our ability to innovate, so as to develop and offer increasingly high levels of services to help our customers meet the challenges of innovation and competitiveness, but they also embody our strategy of ensuring that our Group is a recognized and respected player in the global HPC community, and number one in Europe."

Installed base of thousands of blades puts Bull among the leaders in using the Intel® Xeon® E5 family of new-generation processors

bullx B510 blades will be available on general release from Q1 2012, as soon as the Intel® Xeon® E5 family of processors is also formally released. They have already been chosen by several customers, including two organizations whose Petascale systems are currently being installed. In total, several thousand bullx B510 nodes are already installed and running successfully.

The TOP500, published on 15 November in Seattle at SC11 - the world¿s biggest supercomputing event - also includes a number of bullx B510-based systems delivering a total of one Petaflops peak power and 829 Teraflops sustained power, representing one of the largest base of Intel® Xeon® E5 processors currently installed worldwide.

GENCI (the French national High-Performance Computing organization) has ordered the Curie supercomputer from Bull, which is being installed at the TGCC in France. Eventually this system will feature 5,040 bullx B510 processing nodes, and will be available to support the French and European scientific communities as part of the PRACE (Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe) initiative.

 "Using the new-generation bullx blades is in line with our objective, to provide researchers with the most powerful infrastructures based on open standards. It is totally in line with our mission, to bring to a wide community of scientists and engineers - in France and Europe - the best solutions that will be at the heart of competitiveness and innovation in Europe," commented Stéphane Requena, CTO of GENCI.

On behalf of F4E, the CEA (the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission) ordered the Helios supercomputer from Bull, installed at Rokkasho in Japan, which features 4,410 bullx B510 nodes and will be made available for international research into controlled nuclear fusion, under the auspices of the ITER project.

"For the Helios supercomputer - the installation of which should be complete in a few weeks - we chose the new bullx B510 blades, for their density and power. As a result, Helios will enable the international IFERC community to make significant progress on research into plasmas and controlled fusion," confirmed François Robin, Director of IFERC/CSC Project.

"Major Supercomputing Centers support real world applications across the broad range of technical computing," said Rajeeb Hazra, General Manager, Intel Data Center & Solution Group. " Users across the spectrum of research, design, simulation and analysis activities will be able to realize substantial performance gains through the adoption of Intel Xeon Processor E5 family in the bullx B510 series of Bull".

Appendix: technical specification


Form factor

Double-width blade


Number of processors

2 x 2


2 x 2  Intel® Xeon® Sandy Bridge EP processors


Up to 8


Up to 2.7 GHz


Up  to 130W

L3 cache

Up to20MB shared, depending on model

QPI links

2 x 2 links ( 6.4 GT/s, 7.2 GT/s or 8.0 GT/s)



Intel® C600 series (Patsburg PCH)


Memory max

Up to 256GB Reg ECC DDR3 (with 32GB DIMM when available)

Speed support

1333 MHz, 1600 MHz

Voltage support

1.35V and 1.5V

Type support


Memory slots (number, type)

8 DDR3 DIMMs  ( 4 DIMMs per CPU, 1DIMM par channel )


Bus slots

ConnectX3 adapter providing one FDR IB channel


Maximum Internal Storage capacity

2 x 1 SATA disk 2.5" (9.5 mm height) or 2 x 1 SSD drive 2.5"


Network interface controller

1Gb dual port Ethernet controller for the links to CMM and ESM


System Management

Integrated Baseboard Management Controller (BMC)


Hot-Plug PSU

In chassis


Fan specifications

2 large fans per blade enclosure



8.4 kg (fully populated)


OS & cluster software

Red Hat Enterprise Linux & bullx supercomputer suite



Standard warranty

1 year

Extended Warranty

Consult us


Regulatory compliance


About Bull, an Atos company


Bull is the trusted partner for enterprise data. The Group, which is firmly established in the Cloud and in Big Data, integrates and manages high-performance systems and end-to-end security solutions. Bull's offerings enable its customers to process all the data at their disposal, creating new types of demand. Bull converts data into value for organisations in a completely secure manner.

Bull currently employs around 9,200 people across more than 50 countries, with over 700 staff totally focused on R&D. In 2013, Bull recorded revenues of €1.3 billion.

For more information:
http://www.bull.com  /  http://www.facebook.com/BullGroup  /  http://twitter.com/bull_com


About Atos

Atos SE (Societas Europaea) is a leader in digital services with 2013 pro forma annual revenue of €10 billion and 86,000 employees in 66 countries. Serving a global client base, the Group provides Consulting & Systems Integration services, Managed Services & BPO, Cloud operations, Big Data & Security solutions, as well as transactional services through Worldline, the European leader in the payments and transactional services industry. With its deep technology expertise and industry knowledge, the Group works with clients across different business sectors: Defence, Health, Manufacturing, Media & Utilities, Public Sector, Retail, Telecommunications and Transportation.

Atos is focused on business technology that powers progress and helps organizations to create their firm of the future. The Group is the Worldwide Information Technology Partner for the Olympic & Paralympic Games and is listed on the Euronext Paris market. Atos operates under the brands Atos, Atos Consulting, Atos Worldgrid, Bull, Canopy, and Worldline.

For more information, visit: atos.net

Aurélie Negro
5 Bd Gallieni - 92445 Issy Les moulineaux Cedex - France
Phone: +33 1 58 04 05 02
E-mail: aurelie.negro@bull.net

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