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China dominates top supercomputers list

Sunway TaihuLight supercomputerPicture copyright
Jack Dongarra, Sunway TaihuLight System report

Picture caption

China’s Sunway TaihuLight supercomputer stays the world’s quickest

China has overtaken the US to have probably the most supercomputers within the record of the world’s quickest 500 methods.

The communist nation accounted for 202 of the globe’s highest efficiency machines, in line with the most recent High500 survey.

Against this, the US had 143. That marks its lowest stage because the bi-annual examine started, 25 years in the past, however nonetheless secured it second place.

Japan positioned third with 35 methods, and Germany fourth with 20.

Within the earlier survey, revealed in June, the US nonetheless had a lead of 169 supercomputers to China’s 160.

The reversal of fortunes displays China’s elevated funding in analysis and improvement – in line with a current examine, the nation now accounts for about 20% of the world’s complete R&D expenditure.

Scientific research

Supercomputers are usually giant, costly methods that includes tens of hundreds of processors designed to hold out specialised calculation-intensive duties.

Examples embody:

  • local weather change research
  • nuclear weapons simulations
  • oil prospecting
  • climate forecasting
  • DNA sequencing
  • modelling biomolecules

Efficiency is measured in petaflops (one thousand trillion floating level operations per second).

A flop will be considered a step in a calculation.

Picture copyright
Getty Photographs

Picture caption

This supercomputer – Germany’s DKRZ – is used for local weather analysis

China’s quickest pc – the Sunway TaihuLight – maintained its lead because the world’s speediest, acting at 93 petaflops.

Against this, the US’s quickest – Titan – ranks fifth on the planet, with a most efficiency of 17.6 petaflops.

The record’s authors stated the most recent figures additionally indicated China had overtaken the US by way of mixture efficiency, accounting for 35.four% of the record’s complete processing energy versus the US’s 29.6%.

Erich Strohmaier – one of many survey’s co-founders – informed the BBC that lots of the Chinese language methods had been created to earn cash, with the house owners renting out their processing energy to native and worldwide corporations.

“On the very excessive finish – the methods within the high 10 – these are there for 2 causes,” he added.

“One is solely the status connected with [being in the lead] in a market that was a first-rate instance of US expertise dominance.

“The opposite is to do with scientific exploration and nationwide safety – a variety of these methods are used for calculations associated to weapons methods.”

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