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IBM’s Sequoia is world’s fastest supercomputer

IBM’s Sequoia team have produced a supercomputer which has stolen the top position from Fujitsu’s K on a list of the worlds fastest supercomputers.

The recently completed project beat the Japan’s Fujitsu computer which has now fallen into second place. The US lost the top position two years ago when they were beaten by China.

Sequoia is installed at the US Department of Energy’s Lawrence Livermore National laboratory in California and will be put to use performing nuclear weapons simulations thereby avoiding real-world underground nuclear testing.

 

While Sequoia may be the fastest, the underlying computing capabilities it provides give us increased confidence in the nation’s nuclear deterrent, Sequoia also represents continued American leadership in high performance computing.

Thomas D’Agostino, National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) administrator

 

The performance of the new supercomputer is such that it would take 6.7 billion people working non-stop, 320 years using handheld calculators to complete the same task Sequoia can complete in just one hour.

Although the US has now retaken the lead, it now has only three supercomputers in the top ten list whereas, six months ago it had five. Germany and China have two in the top ten and Japan, France and Italy have one.

Sequoia is 1.55 times faster and, with 1.5 million CPU’s, has twice the number of processors of the Fujitsu machine. Yet at almost 8 megawatts it uses only two thirds the power of it’s Japanese counterpart.

 

Further technical information and references can be found here…