We reported weeks ago that it looked as if China were going to overtake the US for the world’s fastest computer title, and we were right. The Chinese Tianhe-1A system at the National Supercomputer Center in Tianjin has achieved a performance level of 2.57 petaflop/s (quadrillions of calculations per second). It is now rated No.1 in the 36th Edition of the Top500’s world’s most powerful supercomputer list.
The US will not be happy as the Cray XT5 “Jaguar” system at the U.S. Department Of Energy Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility in Tennessee gets demoted to second place. It scored ‘only’ 1.75 petaflop/s.
We reported that initial reports weeks ago suggested that the Jaguar system was going to lose top spot and this has proven true – Top 500 benchmarks each supercomputer with Linpack, the organizations benchmark application.
The Chinese system uses nVidia GPU’s to accelerate computation which is quite a common design element for the top machines. 28 of the Top500 use GPU’s for acceleration. 16 use the Cell Processor, 10 use nvidia chips and two use AMD Radeon solutions.
The U.S should be proud of one thing however, they are the leading producer of powerful systems, with 275 of the top 500 belonging to them. Europe have 124 and Asia 84.
Over 81 percent of the Top500 use Intel processor and 11 percent use AMD Opterons, IBM trail with 8 percent using Power processors.
KitGuru says: We expect the US to answer back by building something even faster in the next few months. Will it ever end?