Titan, the world’s fastest supercomputer

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True to the six-monthly organization TOP500 announced the new list of supercomputers supercomputing conference SC12 held in Salt Lake City, United States. The supercomputer Titan takes over with a staggering17.59 Petaflop / s [quadrillion (American scale) calculations per second].

With just a little advantage, Titan gets ahead of Sequoia , 16.32 Petaflop / s IBM is now second. Titan is based on a hybrid architecture of half a million Opteron cores and NVIDIA accelerators . It was developed by the supercomputer company Cray . It’s actually an upgrade Jaguar supercomputer already once occupied the No. 1, but Titan is 10 times more potent.

The third is K , of Fujitsu SPARK64 with 700,000 cores, 10 000 Petaflop / s located in Japan. The 4th is anotherBlueGene / Q of IBM and the 5th, the first one located in Europe (Germany). The brilliant Chinese supercomputer Tianhe (Sky River) who recently dazzled the world has already fallen to eighth place.

IBM still holds the # 2, Sequoia and includes six top ten supercomputers. Processor technology is dominated byIntel with 60%, followed by AMD with 12% and IBM with 10%.

It is very striking that a total of 62 systems use graphics accelerators or co-processors, including the new Titanand Tianhe GPUs using NVIDIA and several others that accelerate performance with the new processors Phi Xeon of Intel .

As for operating systems, the share of Linux is brutal. 96% of supercomputers use Linux.

Although improving, remains tremendous energy expenditure. The first three ranges or exceed 10 megawatts , the equivalent of thousands of homes. The BlueGene / Q are the most efficient. Although they have many cores, they consume little.

The overwhelming majority are in the U.S. with 251 systems installed. Asia has more than 123 Europe 105.China is the second most supercomputers installed (72). The Department of Energy U.S. DOE has the number 1, 2 and 4, although in different facilities.

The organization TOP500 not define what a supercomputer. Simply include those who publish the result of abenchmark , called Linpack , based on solving linear equations.

Perhaps most revealing is the Roadrunner . He was the first to reach 1 Petaflop / s for 4 years. Today at 23.With this new list, celebrating the twentieth anniversary TOP500. Supercomputers that years ago were powerful today would resemble a laptop. The pace of improvement is brilliant. The road to exaflop / s is served.

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