New research from International Data Corp. shows the impact big data is having on high performance computing systems. The research firm’s 2013 study, IDC Worldwide Study of HPC End-User Sites, includes sites representing 905 HPC systems, nearly double the 488 systems profiled in the previous version of the study.

The proportion of sites employing co-processors or accelerators in their HPC systems increased from 28 percent in the 2011 version of the study to 77 percent in 2013. More than two-thirds (67 percent) of the sites in the 2013 study said they perform big data analysis on their HPC systems, with 30 percent of the available computing cycles devoted on average to big data analysis work.

IDC forecasts that revenue for high-performance data analysis servers will grow during the 2012–2017 forecast period, increasing from $744 million in 2012 to nearly $1.4 billion in 2017.

The proportion of sites exploiting cloud computing to address parts of their HPC workloads rose from 14 percent in 2011 to 24 percent in 2013, with public and private cloud use about equally represented among the 2013 sites.

"The most surprising findings of the 2013 study are the substantially increased penetration of co-processors and accelerators at HPC sites around the world, along with the large proportion of sites that are applying big data technologies and methods to their problems, and the steady growth in cloud computing for HPC," Earl Joseph, program vice president for technical computing at IDC, said in a statement.

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