No magic here, this is CeBIT 2011 in Hanover, Germany and we will blog live from the show floor all week.
Today’s highlight, 3D Chip Stacking. A project conceived at the IBM Research lab in Zurich.
The concept is simple. Energy consumption is a major challenge in the development of future IT systems. Innovative water-cooling technologies offer a promising route to reduce energy consumption sustainably. In a first-of-a-kind project with the ETH Zurich, IBM has built the first hot-water-cooled supercomputer called Aquasar. Aquasar consumes up to 40% less energy and redirects the heat to the ETH’s buildings. Another similar IBM system is in planning: A 3-petaflop supercomputer for the Leibniz-Supercomputing Centre in Munich.
In the future, liquid-cooled 3D chips promise to boost energy efficiency and performance even further. Scientists at IBM Research – Zurich have demonstrated the scalability of the cooling for such stacks of chip layers. In test devices, water was routed through the individual layers in tiny channels measuring only about 50 microns wide. In this way, a 3D chip stack – which generates several times more heat than a single processor on almost the same amount of space – was efficiently cooled, paving the way for future supercomputers the size of a sugar cube.
If you are at CeBIT come check out the demo in Hall 2.