[Beowulf] Mobos for portable use
Andrew M.A. Cater
amacater at galactic.demon.co.uk
Thu Jan 19 12:49:24 PST 2017
On Thu, Jan 19, 2017 at 02:36:22PM +0000, Lux, Jim (337C) wrote:
> This comes up every few years..
> Someone at work was complaining at lunch that the latest laptops have nice screens but don’t have much memory, largely because they want to keep the battery size reasonable ("thin is in”).. my suggestion was “well, why don’t you just use your laptop as the user interface to a bigger more powerful compute node/nodes”
> That devolved into a “but what I really want is the horsepower of my desktop machine”..
> Leaving aside the “use the network to connect to a CPU somewhere else”
> We then started discussing whether anyone makes motherboards with high performance processors, lots of RAM, maybe a GPU for computation (but no display hooked up), but none of the other stuff, and then run off batteries..
> Like a battery powered Intel NUC, but with way more horsepower
> The top of the line NUC seems to have a 19V, 65W power supply.. arstechnica says they burn about 50W running full out. Let’s say you want to run for 4 hours, so you need 200 Whr.
> A 18650 Li battery is 3.4 Ah @ 3.6V, that’s about 23 Wh, so you’d need 9 of them. That’s not all that big a package.. Arranged in a row, they’d be 65mm by 162 mm..
> Prismatic (brick shaped) batteries are 350 Wh/Liter, 135Wh/kg.. so 200 Wh is going to be about half a liter (50x100x100 mm) and 1.5 kg
10 x Beaglebone Black would be good for maximum power/minimum space/minimum volume and cost.
10 x Beaglebone Green might also provide WiFi networking
64 x Raspberry Pi model B - original, not Pi B+ / 2 / 3 - was tried. Not necessarily running off one power socket - PoE, network switches etc.
Search for 64 node Raspberry Pi Bramble cluster
All the best,
> James Lux, P.E.
> Task Manager, DHFR Space Testbed
> Jet Propulsion Laboratory
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