China says it has the world’s fastest computer

A computer capable of calculating 2,500 trillion operations per second (2.5 petaflops per second) was built in China. This would exceed the 1.75 petaflops per second that held the prior first place, the Jaguar Cray in U.S.A., stated the official Chinese news agency Xinhua.

The device, developed by Chinese engineers, has been named the ‘Tianhe-1’ (‘River of Heaven’, one way of referring to the Milky Way in Mandarin) and is in the National Center for Supercomputing the city of Tianjin, 150 kilometers east of Beijing.

The new landmark has appeared on a list of the 100 fastest computers in China, highlighting the information.

According to the experts who developed the machine, it has a theoretical speed of 4.7 petaflops per second, which would triple the current records, but for now the maximum speed reached in the laboratory has been 2.5.

With this achievement, China would get for the first time have the fastest computer in the world, an achievement that has been achieved so far only by Germany, UK, Japan, the former Soviet Union and USA.

The ‘Tianhe 1’ is already being used by potential customers of this technology, such as Tianjin Meteorological Bureau, the main harbor in northern China, and the data center of CNOOC, the nation’s leading offshore oil extractor.

The Universities of Mannheim (Germany), Tennessee and Berkeley (USA.) prepare every six months since 1993 a list of the 500 fastest supercomputers in the world (called TOP500), and in the most recent, published in June, China held second place, with the ‘Nebulae’, which reached 1.27 petaflops per second and was manufactured in the southern city of Shenzhen.

Chinese experts are confident that the ‘Tianhe 1’ will top the TOP500 list on its next edition in November 2010.

Enjoyed this post? Share it!