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Building a 96-Core ARM Super Powered by the Sun

Michael Larabel writes about a 96-core/48-PandaBoard cluster recently constructed at MIT. Drawing approximately 200 Watts of energy, the ARM cluster can be powered entirely by solar energy.

For maximum density and to make it easier to transport, the PandaBoards ended up being stacked vertically. The enclosure for the 48 PandaBoards was an industrial trashcan. Rather than using AC adapters, the PandaBoards were running off a USB power source. The power consumption on the original PandaBoard is similar to that of the PandaBoard ES or perhaps slightly lower when using the more efficient USB power source. My PandaBoard ES testing usually indicates about a 3 Watt idle per board, 5 Watt under load, or 6 Watts under extreme load. This MIT 96-core cluster would idle at just under 170 Watts and for the loads we hit it with over the weekend usually would just go a bit above 200 Watts.

Larabel writes that MIT will be putting out a video, a couple papers, and more other information on this cluster soon, so stay tuned. Read the Full Story.

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