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Mark 6 VLBI Data System Alan Whitney Roger Cappallo Chet Ruszczyk Jason SooHoo MIT Haystack Observatory 11 Oct 2013 2 nd International VLBI Technical Jeju,

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Presentation on theme: "Mark 6 VLBI Data System Alan Whitney Roger Cappallo Chet Ruszczyk Jason SooHoo MIT Haystack Observatory 11 Oct 2013 2 nd International VLBI Technical Jeju,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Mark 6 VLBI Data System Alan Whitney Roger Cappallo Chet Ruszczyk Jason SooHoo MIT Haystack Observatory 11 Oct nd International VLBI Technical Jeju, S. Korea

2 Why Mark6? - drivers for ever-increasing data rates -Sensitivity! -VLBI2010 – enables smaller antennas & shorter scans for better sampling of the atmosphere -EHT – enables coherent detection of Sgr A* at mm wavelengths (through a fluctuating atmosphere)

3 Mark 6 goals - 16Gbps sustained record capability >=32Gbps burst-mode capability - Support all common VLBI formats possibly general ethernet packet recorder - COTS hardware relatively inexpensive upgradeable to follow Moores Law progress - 100% open-source software Linux O/S Other considerations playback as standard Linux files e-VLBI support smooth user transition from Mark 5 preserve Mk5 hardware investments, where possible

4 Mark 6 Physical Layout System chassis (supports 8Gbps by itself) Expansion chassis (needed for 16Gbps) Retractable cable panel Mark 5/6 enclosure Power supply Chassis backplane kit Data-electronics hardware (for easy management of eSATA data cables) Module-front-panel connectors for two standard SAS2 cables Mark 5/6 enclosure Power supply Chassis backplane kit 5U 1U 8 monitor LEDs (one per disk) 4

5 Existing Mark 5 chassis is upgradeable to Mark 6 5 Mark 6 hardware Existing Mark 5 SATA disk modules are upgradeable to Mark 6 (new backplane and front panel) High-speed data connections to module front-panel via two standard SAS cables Cable-management panel (unused cables retract into panel) New chassis backplanes for disk power management

6 Mark 6 16Gbps system

7 Mark6 block diagram

8 c-plane l -control plane l -author: Chet Ruszczyk l -written in python l -interface to user (e.g. field system) –VSI-S and XML control/monitor l -responsible for high-level functions –-disk module management l creating l mounting & unmounting –-scan-based recording –-status, error-checking, etc.

9 c-plane integration & test l -focused on the VLBI2010 system requirements l -accepts data from 4 RDBE-Hs l _CC master control – temporary – until FS is ready for mk6 – converts.skd to xml format – simple time sequencing of scan-based obs.

10 dplane l -data plane l -author: Roger Cappallo l -written in C l -implements the high-speed data flow l -input from NICs l -output to disks within mk6 modules l -manages: – start and stop of data flow via packet inspection – organization of data into files addition of metadata to files

11 dplane block diagram

12 dplane - Technical Highlights l pf_ring used for high-speed packet buffering l efficient use of multiple cores – based on # of available cores – smp affinity of IRQs – thread binding to cores most of physical RAM (up to GB) used for large ring buffers and locked in – one large ring buffer per stream – can be changed dynamically from 1 to 4 streams

13 dplane – file modes l scatter mode l ~10 MB blocks scattered to files resident on different disks – prepended block# for ease of reassembly – uses faster disks to keep up with flow, but balances disk usage as much as possible – resiliet to l standalone program gather – efficiently writes data in correct order to single file – not necessary for single-file (RAID) mode – front end merging software planned for difx RAID mode l data written to single file – typically on a RAID array – good mode for single module of SSDs

14 Mark 6 data hardware ASRock X79 Champion LGA 2011 Intel X79 motherboard 64GB DDR3 SDRAM x Myricom 10G-PCIE2-8B2-2C 10GE NIC LSI E Host Bus Adapter Mark 6 14

15 Additional Features l capture to ring buffers is kept separate from file writing – helps to facilitate e-VLBI l FIFO design decouples writing from capturing (e.g. keep writing during slew) l option to conver mk5b format packets on the fly into vdif packets l all Mk6 software is open source for the community l Mk6 electronics hardware is non-proprietary & openly published

16 Timeline –- Feb 2013: bistatic radar observations of asteroid DA14 recorded at Westford l continuous 8 Gb/s on 2 modules –-Mar 2013: VLBI2010 stand-alone testing –-Sep/Oct 2013: delivery of eight Mark 6 systems (5 - ALMA VLBI; 3 – VGOS) –-Sep/Oct 2013: Developing Mark 6 interfacing software for DiFX correlator; completing standalone self-test; complete documentation

17 Proof of Concept Experiment l -done with prototype software (v.0)-June 2012 l -Westford – GGAO l -technical details –VDIF format –16 Gb/s onto 32 disks –4 GHz bandwidth on the sky –dual polarization with 2 GHz IFs –processed as four 512 MHz channels

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19 Recent progress l continuous 16Gbps error-free operation onto 32 disks using scatter file system l scatter file writing upgraded to support writing operations as high as 31 Gbps onto 32 disks l gather file-reading software reconstructs data written in scatter mode l FUSE front-end for file reading hides gather operation l testing of high-level interface software l long duration simulated experiment usage l tests with SSD-equipped Mark 6 modules l Still to be done: FS support

20 VLBI Support Forum at

21 Mark 6 availability Several options: –Purchase new Mark 6 system from Conduant (~US$13k with 64GB RAM memory, no disk modules) –Upgrade existing Mark 5 system (either yourself or with kit from Conduant) –Upgrade Mark 5 SATA-modules (with upgrade kits from Conduant) –Purchase Mark 6 modules (with or without disks) Contact Greg Lynott of Conduant 21

22 New Front Panel New PCB and power connector New Latch provided (pre-installed on new Panel) Re-use Handle from old Module Mark 5 SATA Drive Module Upgrade to Mark 6 8x LED (1 per drive) Front Panel Rear Panel Easily removable disks Connectors for two eSATA cables Cooling slots 22

23 Recording-rate capability vs time 23 COTS mostly COTS

24 Recording-rate cost vs. time 24 COTS mostly COTS

25 Questions?

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