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



First 360-degrees Large-Eddy Simulation of a full engine

Jérôme DOMBARD |  17 June 2020

Within the PRACE project FULLEST (First fUlL engine computation with Large Eddy SimulaTion), a joint collaboration between CERFACS, SAFRAN and AKIRA technologies, Dr. C. Pérez Arroyo (post doctoral fellow at CERFACS) has carried out under the supervision of Dr. J. Dombard the first high-fidelity simulation of a part of the real engine DGEN380 (for now, from the fan to the combustion chamber). This 360-degrees integrated large-eddy simulation contains around two billion cells on the three instances, carried out with the AVBP code of CERFACS.  The CPU cost is obviously large but still within reach, performing around one turn of fan during 5 days over 14400 skylake cores. Post-treatments are in progress and already show, among other complex phenomena, a strong interaction between the high pressure compressor and the combustion chamber (see forthcoming paper GT2020-16288 C. Pérez Arroyo et al). Below a video showing: in the fan an isosurface at mid-height of the vein colored by the Mach number, in the high pressure compressor a gradient of density, in the bypass of the combustion chamber the static pressure and in the flame tube a temperature field. One of the goals of the project is to create a high-fidelity unsteady database to study interactions between modules and may help other teams to develop new lower order models and/or validate existing ones. Beyond the feasibility and the maturity of the AVBP code, this kind of calculation is an important milestone for the aeronautical industry and would allow to apprehend earlier in the design the effect of integration and installation and thus, to reduce the cycle and therefore the cost of the future aircraft engines. We acknowledge PRACE for awarding us access to Joliot-Curie (Genci) hosted at CEA/TGCC, FRANCE, Safran Tech and DGAC fundings within the project ATOM, along with the invaluable technical support at...Read more

B. Cuenot distinguished as Program Chair of international Symposium on Combustion

superadmin |  29 May 2020

B. Cuenot has been distinguished as Program Chair for the 39th International Symposium on Combustion, to be held in Vancouver (Canada) in 2022. The International Symposium on Combustion is a major event for the combustion community, where the current best research is presented.Read more