China overtakes the USA in race for supercomputer dominance

Image TOP500

Image TOP500

Titan has been bumped down a rung again, thanks to Japan's Gyoukou, a ZettaScaler-2.2 system.

China has reached a supercomputing milestone. Now the country has seized another victory from the U.S.by having the largest number of supercomputers in the TOP500 ranking - on the other hand, the U.S.' presence is the lowest that it has been since the list got started 25 years ago.

China surpassed the USA in the Top500 list for the first time in 2016. The US has 29.6 percent and is in second place. China's Sunway TaihuLight maintains the top spot, as it is capable of performing at a maximum of 93 petaflops.

If China successfully develops a super supercomputer prototype this coming summer, it will take the lead in an global race to a build a system capable of one quintillion (a billion billion) calculations per second.

The five-year-old Titan remains the largest supercomputer in the USA and is measured at 17.59 petaflops. Considering that the Asian country has been accounting for almost 20 percent of the department's expenditures, it should be no surprise that Japan finished in third place at 35 supercomputers, Germany with 20, France with 18, and the United Kingdom with 15.

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High-performance computing capacity is key to a variety of fields, from weather modeling to building weapons and national security systems, as well as automotive, aerospace, and pharmaceutical research.

The list, produced twice a year, rates supercomputers based on speed in a benchmark test by experts from Germany and the US.

The 10th most powerful supercomputer is Fujitsu's K computer at the RIKEN Advanced Institute for Computational Science, which is measured at 10.51 petaflops.

Supercomputers are vital tools for advanced scientific work due to their ability to perform rapid calculations for everything from weather forecasts to missile development. Intel processors represent 94 percent of all processors in the list's supercomputers.

China has not only overtaken the U.S. in sheer numbers, but also in aggregate performance.

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