Cerfacs Enter the world of high performance ...

High Performance Computing

High performance computing

High performance computing is a transverse activity at CERFACS involving all sectors. Since the institution of the Top500, the official listing of the most powerful super computers in the wolrd, a doubling of the peak performance is observed every four years.  This increase of computational resources allows to tackle via numerical simulation  ever more complex phenomena  with increase precision  if you are able to efficiently use the new technologies that allowed for this new performance.

Evolution Top500

Evolution Top500

All aspects of research at CERFACS benefit from this performance increase:  Engine and turbine simulations, aeroacoustic studies,  climate change prospective analysis, development of numerical methods and algorithms specifically for high performance computing, etc …

Technology watch

An important aspect of the high performance computing (HPC) activity at CERFACS relies on code modernisation and method adaptation to future  architectures. This involves:

  • A permanent technology watch on emerging architectures and applications.
  • Code optimisation
  • Adaptation and refactoring of current codes to new technologies
  • New  codes taking advantage of cuting edge  numerical methods and algorithms.


This activity relies on:

  • close collaborations with technology developers and providers.
    • Close collaboration with Intel concerning AVBP optimisation for ManyCores environment,
    • Close collaboration with IBM and Nvidia concerning codes optimisation on IBM Power and GPU environment,
    • Collaboration with Lenovo concerning AVBP optimisation and its preparation for futures technologies,
  • continuous porting and optimisation of applications on various architectures.
    • Since 2014 CERFACS is identified by Intel as an “Intel Parallel Computing Center (Intel IPCC)”
  • close collaboration with national and international computing centers.
    • Cerfacs regularly participate to large supercomputers pre-production phase. In 2015, several major challenges from CERFACS have Highlighted the Occigen configuration of CINES and turing configuration of Idris
    • Specific partner relationship linked CERFACS to CEA and CINES.
  • Access to leadership class systems worldwide to develop and foster fringe simulations via international access programs (ex: PRACE, INCITE)


  • Parametric ignition sequence of an aeronautic burner. Grand Challenge simulated on TURING (IDRIS/GENCI IBM BlueGene Q system). D. Barré, L. Esclaffez, G. Staffelbach, L.Y.M. Gicquel, E. Riber, B. Cuenot.


Séquence d'allumage paramétrique d'un bruleur aéronautique. Grand Challenge réalisé sur l'IBM Blue Gene de l'Idris.

Parametric ignition sequence of an aeronautical burner

  • Cyclone (here on Madagascar) visualised using the instantaneous OLR (Outgoing Longwave Radiation, exprimé en W/m2). Generated on the PRACE CURIE system using the NEMO-WRF model. CERFACS’ participation to the assembly of this model on the ANR project PULSATION.
 Cyclone (ici sur Madagascar) visualisé par le champ instantané d'OLR (Outgoing Longwave Radiation, exprimé en W/m2) produit sur la machine PRACE CURIE grâce au modèle NEMO-WRF. Le Cerfacs a participé à l'assemblage de ce modèle dans le cadre du projet ANR PULSATION.

Numerical cyclone

  • Confined domain explosion prediction – INCITE 2014 project. Argonne National Labs. – D. Barré, P. Quillatre, O.Vermorel, G. Staffelbach, D. Veynante, T. Poinsot
Prédiction d'explosion en milieu confiné, recherches CERFACS

Explosions in building




Tribute to Françoise Chatelin

Brigitte Yzel |  23 July 2021

  Tribute to Françoise CHATELIN   Virtual & Face to Face event @ Cerfacs 14 October 2021, CERFACS, Toulouse (France) 2 pm - 6.30 pm   Cerfacs is organizing a half scientific day on Thursday October 14, 2021 in tribute to Françoise Chatelin who left us prematurely on May 14, 2020   After graduating from the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris (1960-63), and her PhD in Mathematics at Grenoble University (1971) , Françoise Chatelin led with worldwide recognition her research in many areas, from spectral theory for linear operators in Banach spaces and finite precision to Dickson algebras. Professor Chatelin taught at the Universities Grenoble 2 - Pierre Mendès-France and Paris 9 - Dauphine before moving to Toulouse in 1996. She became Emeritus Professor in 2015. She was a visiting researcher at Berkeley and Stanford Universities, IBM San Jose (Ca) and Yorktown Heights (NY). For almost a decade, she was a scientific manager in Industry (in charge of intensive computing) first at the Centre Scientifique IBM France in Paris (1985 -1992) and then in the Central Research Lab of Thales (known as Thomson-CSF at that time) near Paris (1992-95). Françoise Chatelin was Head of the Qualitative Computing group at the Centre Européen de Recherche et de Formation Avancée en Calcul Scientifique (Cerfacs) in Toulouse, France. Professor Chatelin has authored four books; the first three are now classic references available from SIAM. Her second book Valeurs Propres de Matrices (Masson, Paris, 1988) has received the IBM - France prize for « Best Scientific and technical publication 1988 ». Beyond her scientific contribution, Françoise Chatelin played a structuring role on research at CERFACS through multiple thesis on innovative topics. This event is devoted to the human and scientific tribute of her life. As a faithful image of the active and passionate woman that...Read more

CERFACS is involved in the NextSim project

CERFACS |  19 July 2021

The primary objective is to increase the capabilities of Computational Fluid Dynamics tools on extreme-scale parallel computing platforms for aeronautical design. The Kick-Off Meeting took place on 12 March 2021. This project has received funding from the European High-Performance Computing Joint Undertaking (JU) under grant agreement N° 956104. The JU receives support from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme and Spain, France, Germany. For more information, please visit  EuroHPC website : Project webpage :Read more