Princeton University Researchers Unveil 25-Core Open Source Piton Processor At Hot Chips
Piton represents several years of research and development by David Wentzlaff, a Princeton assistant professor of electrical engineering and associated faculty in the Department of Computer Science, and his students. It's also a rare thing—Wentzlaff says it's not often that a physical piece of hardware is created in an academic setting.
This one was purpose built for the rigorous demands of data centers. With its scalable architecture, Piton can go from a dozen cores to thousands of cores. What's more, the architecture allows for thousands of chips to be work together in a single system, paving the way for millions of independent processing cores working in conjunction.
In its current form, the 25-core Piton chip has more than 460 million transistors built on IBM's 32-nanometer manufacturing process. The entire CPU measures 6 millimeters by 6 millimeters. It's not the first processor with dozens of cores, but its scalable architecture is the draw.
"What we have with Piton is really a prototype for future commercial server systems that could take advantage of a tremendous number of cores to speed up processing," Wentzlaff added.