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Leonhard is a new cluster designed for “big data” applications. This cluster is financed jointly by a small group of shareholders and IT Services, and by a special grant from the Executive Board of ETH.

As the name implies, Leonhard is closely related to Euler. It is operated by the same group and offers the same software environment. One part of Leonhard is a normal system intended for shareholders dealing with open (public) research data; the other part is a secure system intended for confidential data, like personalized medicine. In general, the name Leonhard refers to the whole cluster, and its two parts are called respectively Leonhard Open and Leonhard Med. For security reasons, each part has its own dedicated storage, network and login nodes.

Unlike Euler, which is open to all members of ETH without restriction, Leonhard is reserved exclusively to the groups who have invested in it (the so-called shareholders). Temporary guest accounts will be created on demand for prospective shareholders who want to try it out before buying in.

Life time

The cluster's components were delivered in December 2016. Leonhard Med was installed in December already is currently in "alpha" testing.

The installation of Leonhard Open started in January 2017 and is expected to be complete in February. We plan to open it to "beta" users in Q1 and to enter normal production in Q2.


Each part of Leonhard is attached to a dedicated high-performance parallel file system — based on GPFS — with a capacity of 2.0 PB for Leonhard Open and 1.5 PB for Leonhard Med (1 PB = 10^15 bytes).

Both file systems have built-in support for data encryption.

Since Leonhard is intended for big data processing, storage is offered in blocks of 20 TB (up to 100 TB) and 50 TB (above 100 TB) and can only be purchased in combination with compute nodes (minimum 1 node).

Compute nodes

Leonhard contains three types of compute nodes:

  • Standard nodes equipped with two 18-core Intel Xeon E5-2697v4 processors and 128 GB of memory
  • Large-memory nodes equipped with two 18-core Intel Xeon E5-2697v4 processors and 512 GB of memory
  • GPU nodes equipped with two 10-core Xeon E5-2650v4 processors, 256 GB of memory and eight Nvidia GTX 1080 GPUs

Since Leonhard is intended for big data processing, compute nodes can only be purchased in combination with storage (minimum 20 TB).


All compute nodes are connected together and to the cluster's parallel file systems via a 100 Gb/s InfiniBand EDR network.


Prices cannot be published on-line. Prospective shareholders are invited to contact Cluster Support for more information.