Over at InfoWorld, Michael Kan writes that, as the U.S. launched what’s expected to be the world’s fastest supercomputer at 20 petaflops, China is building a machine that is intended to be five times faster when it is deployed in 2015.
China’s Tianhe-2 supercomputer will run at 100 petaflops (quadrillion floating-point calculations per second), according to the Guangzhou Supercomputing Center, where the machine will be housed. Tianhe-2 could help keep China competitive with the future supercomputers of other countries, as industry experts estimate machines will start reaching 1,000-petaflop performance by 2018. The Tianhe-2 is not China’s first attempt at building a world-beating supercomputer. It briefly took the top spot on the world’s list of most powerful supercomputers in 2010 with the Tianhe-1A. That computer is now ranked fifth in the world with a theoretical peak speed of 4.7 petaflops, and uses processors from Intel and Nvidia.
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