SMU’s high performance computing (HPC) cluster, ManeFrame II (M2), features state-of-the-art CPUs, accelerators, and networking technologies, high memory capacity per node, and advanced interactive GPU-accelerated remote desktop experiences.

The cluster provides a familiar interactive experience for researchers, which includes the CentOS 7 operating system, the SLURM resource scheduler, and the Lmod environment module system. Additionally, familiar development tool chains are available including the GCC, Intel, and PGI compiler suites. Optimized high-level programming environments such as MATLAB, Python, and R are also installed in addition to the domain specific software packages that SMU researchers depend on for their work.

ManeFrame I (retired)

ManeFrame II (2017)

ManeFrame II (2019)

NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD (Coming 2022)

Computational Ability




1,644 TFLOPS

Number of Nodes





CPU Cores (AVX2)





Total Accelerator Cores





Total Memory

29.2 TB (29,856 GB)

116.5 TB (119,336 GB)

120 TB (122,880 GB)

52.5 TB (53,760 GB)

Node Interconnect Bandwidth

20 Gb/s

100 Gb/s

100 Gb/s

200 Gb/s

Work Storage



768 TB (Shared)

768 TB (Shared)

Scratch Space

1.4 PB (1,229 TB)

1.4 PB (1,434 TB)

2.8 PB (2,867 TB)

750 TB (Raw)

Archive Capabilities





Operating System

Scientific Linux 6

CentOS 7

CentOS 7

Ubuntu 20.04

Standard-, Medium-, and High- Memory Compute Nodes

Each of the 176 standard compute nodes has 36 cores, 256 GB of memory, and 100 Gb/s networking. Specifically, these nodes contain dual Intel Xeon E5-2695v4 2.1 GHz 18-core “Broadwell” processors with 45 MB of cache each and 256 GB of DDR4-2400 memory. This translates to efficient execution per processor cycle and vectorization via the second-generation Advanced Vector Extensions (AVX2). In addition, there are 35 medium- and five high-memory compute nodes which have the same processors, but feature 768 GB and 1,536 GB (1.5 TB) of DDR4-2400 memory respectively and ManeFrame I’s four 768 GB and six 1,536 GB (1.5 TB) nodes are also part of ManeFrame II.

Accelerator Nodes with NVIDIA GPUs

M2 contains 36 accelerator nodes with NVIDIA GPUs are configured with dual Intel Xeon E5-2695v4 2.1 GHz 18-core “Broadwell” processors, 256 GB of DDR4-2400 memory, and one NVIDIA P100 GPU accelerator. Each NVIDIA P100 GPU has 3,584 CUDA cores and 16 GB CoWoS HBM2 memory. The P100 GPU is the based on the Pascal architecture and a high bandwidth (732 GB/s) stacked memory architecture. In the summer of 2019, three additional nodes were added with eight NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPUs each. Each GPU has 32 GB of CoWoS HBM2 memory, 5,120 NVIDIA CUDA cores, and 640 NVIDIA Tensor cores. In addition, M2 has one ever-broadening set of drop-in replacement libraries and ever easier to implement CUDA-based programming environments, make GPU-based acceleration significantly more approachable for many computationally intensive applications.

Many-Core Nodes with Intel Xeon Phi Processors

The 36 many-core nodes are configured with Intel Xeon Phi 7230 (also known as Knights Landing or KNL) processors and 385 GB of DDR4-2400 memory. Each Xeon Phi has 64 1.30 GHz cores and 16 GB of high bandwidth (400 GB/s) stacked memory. KNL processors are based on the Intel’s “Silvermont” Atom processor cores and have hardware-based support for up to four concurrent threads. A principal benefit of the KNL processors is that they are based on and binary compatible with x86 architectures and therefore do not require specialized programming languages or directives/pragmas.

Virtual Desktop Nodes

The five virtual desktop nodes will allow researchers remote desktop access to high-performance compute capability. These nodes can be used for applications that have demanding remote visualization and/or rendering requirements. In addition, these virtual desktops can be configured as either Linux or Windows for a handful of compatible applications. Each node has dual Intel Xeon E5-2695v4 2.1 GHz 18-core “Broadwell” processors, 256 GB of DDR4-2400 memory, and one NVIDIA Quadro M5000 GPU.

High-Performance Network

The cluster provides high-speed and low-latency EDR InfiniBand networking. Every node is equipped with a Mellanox ConnectX-5 InfiniBand adaptor and all nodes are connected via Mellanox Switch-IB 2 switches. The InfiniBand network provides 100 Gb/s and less than 600 nanosecond latency. Additionally, the combination of ConnectX-5 and Switch-IB 2 provides network acceleration for applications by off-loading some MPI calls, thereby reducing the load on the processors, freeing them to work on other computations.

High-Performance and Archival Storage

The cluster has four storage systems. The first storage system is an NFS based storage providing space for home directories, applications, libraries, and compilers, etc. This storage system provides 11.4 TB of sold state drive based usable space and 38.4 TB of usable 7200 RPM SAS storage space. This storage space will have an automatic retention of 30 days’ worth of changes. The second storage system provides the high-performance Lustre file system for calculation scratch space. This storage system provides 2.8 PB of usable space with a write performance of 56.4 GB/s and read performance of 70.8 GB/s, when used in parallel. The third storage system is 110 TB of usable disk based archive space that includes off-site backup for disaster recovery. The fourth storage system, “work”, provides 8 TB of storage per user.

Faculty Partner Nodes

The purposes of the Center for Research Computing (CRC) faculty partnership program are to:

  1. Help individual researchers leverage the facilities and expertise of the center to more efficiently use their research funding.

  2. Provide a mechanism for the continued growth and renewal of SMU’s research computing infrastructure.

See Programs and Policies for more information.

Professor Thomas Hagstrom (Mathematics)

Professor Hagstrom has one node that is available as port of M2. This node has dual Intel Xeon E5-2680v3 2.50 GHz 12-core “Sandy Bridge” processors, 128 GB of memory, and quad NVIDIA K80 GPU accelerators. Each GPU has 4,992 CUDA cores and 24 GB of GDDR5 memory.

The queue for these nodes, fp-gpgpu-2, is generally available to M2 users.

Professor Barbara Minsker (Civil and Environmental Engineering)

Professor Minsker has two nodes that are availabe as part of M2. These nodes each have dual Intel Xeon Gold 6148 2.40 GHz 20-core “Skylake” processors, 384 GB of memory, dual NVIDIA V100 GPU accelerators, and 2 TB of local RAID scratch space. Each GPU has 5,120 CUDA cores, 640 Tensor cores, and 32 GB CoWoS HBM2 memory. The V100 GPU is based on the Volta architecture and an extremely high bandwidth (900 GB/s) stacked memory architecture.

The queue for these nodes, fp-gpgpu-3, is generally available to M2 users with the following restrictions.

  • The maximum job duration for users not in Dr. Minsker’s group is 24 hours

  • There is no maximum job duration for users in Dr. Minsker’s group when the --qos qos_clowder Slurm flag is used

  • Jobs submitted without the --qos qos_clowder flag may be queued indefinitely until jobs submitted with the flag finish


If you wish to acknowledge the use of M2 in any publication we suggest the following: “Computational resources for this research were provided by SMU’s Center for Research Computing.”