For decades, the world’s fastest supercomputers were consistently owned and operated by America. However, over the past few years, the world’s fastest supercomputer title has swapped between China and America multiple times.
Well, as of June 18, 2013, the honor of owning the world’s fastest supercomputer has been returned to China. China’s Tianhe-2 computer, also known as the Milky Way-2, recently produced 33.86 petaflops per second in Linpack testing.
You can view a selection of the world’s most powerful supercomputers here. 5 of the top 10 fastest supercomputers are owned by the US, 2 are owned by China, 2 are owned by Germany, and 1 is owned by Japan.
China’s newest supercomputer is part of the country’s National University of Defense Technology, which will be installed at the National Supercomputer Center in Guangzho, China by the end of 2013. Interestingly enough, those close to the project didn’t expect the supercomputer to be ready for another 2 years, putting the Milky Way-2 leaps and bounds ahead of its competition.
The Chinese supercomputer consumes 17,808kW of power. However, it also destroys its competition by an astonishingly large margin. The second place supercomputer, America’s Titan at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, benchmarks at ‘just’ 17.59 petaflops per second, which means that China’s supercomputer is nearly twice as fast as anything America’s ever made.
Supercomputers like this have the potential to change the world. I can’t wait to see what the Chinese do with the Tianhe-2 computer.