Thanks to Indiana University and The Next Platform, we have a hint of what’s to come with NVIDIA’s future GPU plans, with strong signs that NVIDIA will have a new Tesla accelerator (and underlying GPU) ready for use by this summer.
In an article outlining the installation of Indiana University’s Big Red 200 supercomputer – which also happens to be the first Cray Shasta supercomputer to be installed – The Next Platform reports that Indiana University has opted to split up the deployment of the supercomputer in to two phases. In particular, the supercomputer was meant to be delivered with Tesla V100s; however the university has instead opted to hold off on delivery of their accelerators so that they can instead have NVIDIA’s next-generation accelerators, which would make them among the first institutions to get the new accelerators.
The revelation is notable as NVIDIA has yet to announce any new Tesla accelerators or matching GPUs. The company’s current Tesla V100s, based on the GV100 GPU, were first announced back at GTC 2017, so NVIDIA’s compute accelerators are due for a major refresh. However it’s a bit surprising to see anyone other than NVIDIA reveal any details about the new parts, given how buttoned-down the company normally is about such details.
At any rate, according to Indiana University the group expects to have their new accelerators installed by later this summer, with Big Red 200 running in CPU-only mode for now. The Next Platform article goes on to state that the newer accelerators will deliver “70 percent to 75 percent more performance” than NVIDIA’s current V100 accelerators, which assuming it’s accurate, would make for a hefty generational upgrade in performance. Though as always, with multiple modes of compute involved – everything from straight FP32 vector math to tensor operations to low precision operations – the devil is in the details on where those performance gains would most be realized.
In the meantime, NVIDIA’s next GTC event is scheduled for mid-March. So if NVIDIA is planning to launch a new Tesla, then I would certainly expect to see it there.