China just officially climbed to the top position in the supercomputer performance race. You may have read that the country now has the fastest, and also the third fastest, supercomputer in the world.
Se qualcuno avesse ancora dubbi sul fatto che gli scenari internazionali siano ormai irreparabilmente cambiati: doveva succedere anche questo prima o poi, la supremazia per la potenza di calcolo è passata in mani cinesi.
Un po’ di storia:
* In June 1995, China had its first supercomputer in the top 500. The system was an IBM SP2/32 and delivered a performance of 5.8 gigaflops, placing China at 143rd position. At the time, the fastest supercomputer in the world was the Numerical Wind Tunnel in Japan which delivered a performance of 1,130 gigaflops.
* In June 2004, a Chinese supercomputer entered the top 10 for the first time. It was the Dawning 4000A at the Shanghai Supercomputer Center with a performance of 8.06 teraflops, placing it in 10th position. The fastest supercomputer in the world at that time was The Earth Simulator in Japan with a performance of 35.86 teraflops. China lost its top 10 position just six months later, in November 2004.
* In November 2009, China finally regained a position in the top 10 with the Tianhe-1. It placed 5th with a performance of 564 teraflops. The fastest system at that time was the America-based Jaguar with 1.75 petaflops.
* In November 2010, China finally conquered the number one position with the Tianhe-1A, which delivers a massive performance level of 2.57 petaflops. That’s 47% faster than Jaguar, which is now in second place. In third place is another Chinese system called Nebulae, with a performance of 1.27 petaflops.
Ma gli USA non stanno a guardare:
That said, the United States won’t take that lying down. There are announced plans of American supercomputers capable of as much as 20 petaflops that should be available in 2012. It’s like we’re entering another kind of arms race, this time for computing power.
Via The Royal Pingdom.