US regains top spot for fastest supercomputer

The U.S. Government has contracted out IBM to build a massive supercomputer bigger than any supercomputer out there. The supercomputer system, called Sequoia, will be capable of delivering 20 petaflops (1,000 trillion sustained floating-point operations per second) and is being built for the U.S. Department of Energy.
The announcement Monday at the 2012 International Supercomputing Conference in Hamburg, Germany recognized Sequoia, an IBM /Q system installed at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
The machine delivered an impressive 16.32 petaflops -- a equating to a thousand trillion operations -- per second.
Sequoia is primarily for simulations used to ensure the safety and reliability of US nuclear weapons. It also is used for research into astronomy, energy, human genome science and climate change.

Sequoia dethrones Fujitsu's 'K Computer' installed at the RIKEN Advanced Institute for Computational Science (AICS) in Kobe, Japan, which dropped to the number two spot at 10.51 petaflops per second.
A new Mira which is also part of the IBM BlueGene/Q series at Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois, was third fastest.
The most powerful system in Europe and number four on the List is SuperMUC, an iDataplex system installed at Leibniz Rechenzentrum in Germany.
China, which briefly took the top spot in November 2010, has two systems in the top 10.
The announcement came from the TOP500 list compiled by the University of Mannheim, Germany; the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee.
(c) 2012 AFP


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