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Xilinx launches a data-center accelerator for HPC

posted on Nov 19, 2021

Xilinx has introduced its latest data-center accelerator, the Alveo U55C, which it says is its most powerful accelerator yet thanks to a memory change.

For the most part, the FPGA-powered Alveo U55C is similar to its predecessor, Alveo U280. But the U280 has 8GB of HBM2 memory and 16GB of DDR4 DRAM, while the U55C comes with 16GB of HBM2 memory, and no DDR4. HBM2 is considerably faster and more expensive than DDR4 memory.

By going to all HBM2 and removing the DDR4, Xilinx is able to increase performance and considerably reduce power and size. The Alveo U55C card is a single-slot full height, half length (FHHL) form factor vs. the full height, full length, dual width form of the U280. It also has a much lower power draw, 150W vs. 215W.

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