Washington: Tianhe-2, developed by China's National University of Defence Technology, has emerged to be the fastest supercomputer yet again. It retained the top spot as the world's fastest supercomputer, according to a biannual Top500 list of supercomputers released on Monday for the fourth consecutive time.
Tianhe-2, which means "Milky Way-2" in Chinese, can operate at 33.86 petaflops per second (Pflop/s), the equivalent of 33,860 quadrillion calculations per second.
In a coincidence of sorts, this revised list came after the announcement Friday by the US Department of Energy (DOE) that it would spend $325 million on building two supercomputers, which will be three to five times faster than Tianhe-2.
"The (US) systems will be operational in 2018. It's just a coincidence," Dongarra said in an email to Xinhua, adding that there would be additional announcements to come from the DOE. And before that, there will be no machine that can dethrone the Chinese supercomputer, he added.
Titan, installed at the DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, remains the No. 2 system with a performance of 17.59 Pflop/s. Sequoia, installed at the DOE's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, is again the No. 3 system with a performance of 17.17 Pflop/s.
The No. 4 system is Japan's K computerwith 10.51 Pflop/s, followed by Mira, installed at the DOE's Argonne National Laboratory, which has a performance of 8.59 Pflop/s.
The top 10 list almost remains the same except for one new entry at number 10, a 3.57 Pflop/s Cray Storm system installed at an undisclosed US government site.
"These machines in the top 10 are very expensive and provide extreme computing power. Perhaps we have enough computing power for the moment and not enough funding for the next generation just now," Dongarra said, noting that the interest and need by science for these systems and more powerful systems will not end.
In terms of overall systems, the US remains the top country with 231, but this number is down from 233 in June 2014 and down from 265 on the November 2013 list, nearing the country's historical low number on the list.
China still occupies the No.2 position as a user of supercomputers, ahead of Japan, Britain, France, and Germany. But the number of systems installed in the Chinese mainland has fallen to 61, compared with 76 on the previous list.
(With Agency Inputs)