China has, of course, built the world’s next fastest supercomputer

China has beaten its own record with a new supercomputer that exceeds in both speed and efficiency.

Findings from the TOP500 project, which measures supercomputer statistics regardless of architecture, suggest the 93 petaflop Sunway TaihuLight is twice as fast and three times as efficient as the previous record holder, the Tianhe-2 (at 33.86 petaflop per second), which is also found in China.

The Sunway TaihuLight is capable of up to 93 quadrillion calculations per second.

The new system, according to TOP500, was built entirely using processors designed and made in China, while the Tianhe-2 was Intel-based. Nevertheless, the latter held the No. 1 spot for the past six years, the group said.

The Sunway TaihuLight was built using 10,649,600 computing cores made up of 40,960 nodes, runs on a Linux-based operating system and consumes 15.37 MW, or 6 Gflops per watt at its peak.

“This allows the TaihuLight system to grab one of the top spots on the Green500 in terms of the Performance/Power metric,” TOP500 said in a statement.

The Sunway TaihuLight was developed by China’s National Research Center of Parallel Computer Engineering & Technology (NRCPC) and installed at the National Supercomputing Center in Wuxi, Jiangsu province, about a two-hour drive west of Shanghai.

Researchers have said that the supercomputer’s main applications will include advanced manufacturing, weather forecast and big data analytics.

Japan, Switzerland, Germany and Saudi Arabia are represented among the top 10, in addition to China and the U.S.

According to TOP500, this is the first iteration of the report where China has exceeded the U.S. in the number of systems on the list.

“With a surge in industrial and research installations registered over the last few years, China leads with 167 systems and the U.S. is second with 165,” the group said. “China also leads the performance category, thanks to the No. 1 and No. 2 systems.”

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Dave Yin
Dave Yin
Digital Staff Writer at Computer Dealer News, covering Canada's IT channel.

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