ALCF deploys powerful new file storage systems

ALCF deploys powerful new file storage systems

Eagle and Grand are 100 petabyte Lustre file systems supported by HPE’s Cray ClusterStor E1000 platform.

The new systems, Eagle and Grand, provide ALCF users with increased storage capacity and enhanced data sharing capabilities. 

The Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF) began the new year with the rollout of its new file storage systems, Grand and Eagle. Online since January 1, these 100 petabyte (PB) Lustre file systems, supported by HPE’s Cray ClusterStor E1000 platform, represent a substantial upgrade over their predecessors.

“The deployment of Grand and Eagle is another milestone for the ALCF,” said Katherine Riley, ALCF director of science. “The capabilities of these systems will help expand the scale and ambition of computing research performed at the laboratory to accelerate the pace of scientific discovery.”

The Eagle file system is important in that it will be used primarily for data sharing across high-performance computing facilities. As of January 25, non-ALCF users throughout the scientific community will be able to write data to and read data from Globus endpoint shares on the Eagle system (so long as this occurs within the scope of an ALCF project whose principal investigator is a registered user). Long anticipated as a service at the ALCF, this form of data sharing will provide users with a natural and convenient storage space for collaboration.

“The conjunction of the Eagle file system and Globus technologies helps the ALCF realize one of its longtime data-sharing goals,” said ALCF Director Michael E. Papka. “The collaborative work that this infrastructure enables will further empower the research community to conduct the best-possible data-driven science by opening up new frontiers for machine learning and other rapidly evolving techniques.”

Grand provides increased storage capacity for the ALCF user community and will enable new levels of performance for traditional checkpoint-restart workloads, as well as for complex workflows and metadata-intensive work.

Both Grand and Eagle are configured with 160 object storage targets (OSTs) and 40 metadata targets (MDTs), and each has a sustained data transfer rate of 650 gigabytes per second — a vast improvement over the 240 GB/s rate achieved by the previous-generation file systems for Mira and Theta. Furthermore, the 200 PB of usable capacity offered by Grand and Eagle eclipses that of the Mira and Theta file systems (27 PB and 10 PB, respectively).

New projects can request for quota on Eagle by filling out the allocation request form at:

For supporting documentation, please visit:

The ALCF is a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science User Facility located at DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory.


The Argonne Leadership Computing Facility provides supercomputing capabilities to the scientific and engineering community to advance fundamental discovery and understanding in a broad range of disciplines. Supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Science, Advanced Scientific Computing Research (ASCR) program, the ALCF is one of two DOE Leadership Computing Facilities in the nation dedicated to open science.

Argonne National Laboratory seeks solutions to pressing national problems in science and technology. The nation’s first national laboratory, Argonne conducts leading-edge basic and applied scientific research in virtually every scientific discipline. Argonne researchers work closely with researchers from hundreds of companies, universities, and federal, state and municipal agencies to help them solve their specific problems, advance America’s scientific leadership and prepare the nation for a better future. With employees from more than 60 nations, Argonne is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit https://​ener​gy​.gov/​s​c​ience.