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Nvidia's Jetson Xavier NX Is 'World's Smallest Supercomputer' For AI

'Jetson Xavier NX lets our customers and partners dramatically increase AI capabilities without increasing the size or power consumption of the device,' Nvidia edge computing exec Deepu Talla says of the new product.

Nvidia said its new Jetson Xavier NX is the “world's smallest supercomputer” for artificial intelligence applications at the edge, giving robotics and embedded computing companies the ability to deliver "server-class performance" in a 10-watt power envelope.

The $399 Jetson Xavier NX, revealed Wednesday during the GPU powerhouse's Nvidia GTC conference in Washington, D.C., is the smallest form factor in Nvidia's Jetson computing board lineup, measuring at just 70-by-45 millimeters, roughly as tall as a Lego figurine. The company also announced that it has achieved the fastest results across five benchmarks in the MLPerf Inference Suite.

[Related: Nvidia Reveals EGX Edge Supercomputing Platform For AI, IoT And 5G]

The computing board comes with 384 CUDA cores and 48 tensor cores, allowing it to deliver up to 21 Tera Operations Per Second, or TOPs, a common way to measure performance in high-performance system-on-chips. Thanks to Nvidia's engineering and design, the Jetson Xavier NX provides up to 15 times higher performance than its Jetson TX2 in a smaller form factor with the same power draw.

The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company said the Jetson Xavier NX is made for performance-hungry devices that are "constrained by size, weight, power budgets or cost," such as commercial robots, drones high-resolution factory sensors, portable medical devices and industrial IoT systems.

"AI has become the enabling technology for modern robotics and embedded devices that will transform industries," Deepu Talla, vice president and general manager of edge computing at Nvidia, said in a statement. "Many of these devices, based on small form factors and lower power, were constrained from adding more AI features. Jetson Xavier NX lets our customers and partners dramatically increase AI capabilities without increasing the size or power consumption of the device."

Like Nvidia's other Jetson products, Jetson Xavier NX runs on the chipmaker's CUDA-X AI software architecture that the company said can speed up development and lower costs. It's also supported by the company's JetPack software development kit, which provides a "complete AI software stack."

Lee Ritholz, director and chief architect of applied AI at Lockheed Martin, said that Nvidia's embedded Jetson products help accelerate research, development and deployment of AI solutions on Lockheed Martin's platforms.

"With Jetson Xavier NX’s exceptional performance, small form factor and low power, we will be able to do more processing in real time at the edge than ever before," he said in a statement.

In addition to its 384 CUDA cores and 48 Tensor Cores, the Jetson Xavier NX comes with Nvidia's Deep Learning Accelerator, up to a six-core Carmel Arm CPU, up to six CSI cameras, 12 lanes for the MIPI CSI-2 camera serial interface, 8 GB of 128-bit LPDDR4x memory, gigabit Ethernet and Ubuntu-based Linux. It comes with options for 10-watt and 15-watt power envelopes.

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