China steals supercomputer title from the US

By on October 28, 2010, 12:55 PM
China has built the world's fastest supercomputer, stealing the crown from the United States, according to the New York Times. The National University of Defense Technology's Tianhe-1A PC has 14,336 processors from Intel and over 7,168 M2050 graphics cards from Nvidia ($2,500 each). This gives it a horsepower equivalent of 175,000 laptop computers, according to Nvidia. China says the Tianhe-1A, which is under supervision from the Ministry of National Defense and the Ministry of Education, will be used by scientists across several fields and will also be made available to other countries.

The supercomputer race is extremely competitive and is a source of national pride. China's 2.507 petaflop supercomputer, which is 30 percent faster than the world's second most powerful supercomputer, was built by the National University of Defense Technology using the government's money and is now located at the National Supercomputing Center in Tianjin. America's fastest supercomputer is in Tennessee, where it's been since 2004 when the US grabbed first place back from Japan. The ranking is based on a standard test used to gauge how well the systems handle mathematical calculations. Out of the top 10, seven of the world's most powerful computers are in the US, two are in China, and one is in Germany.





User Comments: 87

Got something to say? Post a comment
treeski treeski said:

America's fastest supercomputer is in Tennessee, where it's been since 2004 when the US grabbed first place back from Japan... Out of the top 10, seven of the world's most powerful computers are in the US, two are in China, and one is in Germany.

If we just reclaimed the title in 2004 (although now lost it), have so many super computers been built to completely remove Japan from the top 10?

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

That's my new favorite word - petaflop.

BlindObject said:

Question is- How does it run Crysis?

PanicX PanicX, TechSpot Ambassador, said:

I'm guessing this news has brought down www.top500.org a list of the top 500 super computers.

What really amazes me though is that even with the huge investment and development costs, the computer power is still dwarfed by that of several botnets serving up spam

Jibberish18 said:

BlindObject said:

Question is- How does it run Crysis?

On stories like this, a quote like the one above is almost essential. And good for China on the new Super Computing Power. Competition is always good.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

Question is- How does it run Crysis?
You would have to take your shoes off to be able to count the frame rate!

Afenix said:

I bet that computer can run games with graphics and physics being much much better than in real life.

TeamworkGuy2 said:

Healthy competition is good... Will be interesting to see how long China holds the title.

Checked and top500.org will not load, just as PanicX said. Although you can ping the server (150ms).

NeoFlux said:

You would have to take your shoes off to be able to count the frame rate!

They assembling another supercomputer in next room to count the frames

ElShotte ElShotte said:

It could probably render the Final Fantasy movie in real time... Or could allow 100,000 Chinese to play COD...

alexandrionel said:

Almost 18 million $ just for the graphics??

I guess it is true what I was told 15 years ago, that one day the yellow race will rule the world.

taea00 said:

The Chinese are attempting to find the Ultimate Question to the Ultimate Answer. Let's just hope it isn't destroyed 5 minutes before it's finished computing.

Uvindu said:

It was about time... China is improving its infrastructure and stepping up. It won't be surprising to see them hold even more top spots in the coming years.

GO CHINA! SHOW WHAT A THIRD WORLD COUNTRY CAN DO!

cardriverx said:

That makes no sence, how can physics be better than real life? lol, and to think, 10 years from now the computers in our houses will be more powerful than this one. heh.

Neojt said:

Pretty impressive that it took 6 years to beat the best supercomputer.

i men the way tech is evolving these days you purchase a PC and the next week it out of date

But i agree with treeski what happend to Japan? did they build that many supercomps in 6years!!

Oh and btw GO NVIDIA GO

frodough said:

the mark on the door right next to the guy in the picture is the chinese character for 'Sky' and the one next to that has the set of chinese characters for 'Ocean' i think. no Alpha, Bravo here :p

TwiztidSef said:

I am wondering what cluster os they are running. I am betting Red Hat enterprise. Red Hats pretty good for everything except storage from what i remember.

Also what are they going to use this for? I hope they are keeping up with the application development for these.

Lokalaskurar Lokalaskurar said:

BlindObject said:

Question is- How does it run Crysis?

At many gigaframes per second

taea00 said:

twiztidsef said:

I am wondering what cluster os they are running. I am betting Red Hat enterprise. Red Hats pretty good for everything except storage from what i remember.

Also what are they going to use this for? I hope they are keeping up with the application development for these.

They're creating specialized software that'll see into the future and update your facebook and twitter status, so people will know ahead of time that while you no longer enjoy the musical stylings of Coldplay, you now have a crush on Suzy from next door.

Richy2k9 said:

hello ...

TomSEA said:

That's my new favorite word - petaflop.

Same here, as long as peta isn't separated from flop here

nice move China, now who's next !?

cheers!

Guest said:

I'd love to play Pong on that system.

neowing said:

From the original post:

"The supercomputer race is extremely competitive and is a source of national pride"

I don't believe the national pride is the most important. The most important fact is that one man stood up from earth and conquer all the obstacle to become the top of all the things. Do anyone have the same opinion of my post ?

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

.. Or could allow 100,000 Chinese to play COD...

Right! Or maybe COD 5, "The Campaign for Tibet".

Blkm0nk3y92 Blkm0nk3y92 said:

I seen this on Yahoo. Thats a little dissapointing, but gosh damn that thing is fast...

Guest said:

It's too bad even with that super computer, Fallout New Vegas would still be a buggy mess.

klepto12 klepto12, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Nice china is turning into a world power with all of there steel buying and building new york sized cities every 2 years now they have the super computer crown as well seems china is sneaking a fast one on us that we didnt even know was coming watch out i say.

Cueto_99 said:

I truly, really hope they haven't used some gtx480... Man if so it must be connected to a nuclear reactor...

Guest said:

My Computer can do 14.52 dekaflops ... beat that!

Eddo22 said:

Now they can keep better track of all the people in China. National defense they say.

Guest said:

only 1700 laptops?! and is somehow for more ufo?

Emin3nce said:

Maaaybe, and now, just maaaybe the money invested by both the US, China and any other competitors, should have been used to fight animal cruelty or innovate green technologies.

I dunno, thats' just my two bits.

This supercomputer will probably be 'outdone' in another 3 years, dismantled and then there's a huuuge gap of "Remember that time we spent 30mil on a computer?"

elroacho72 said:

Maybe Adobe can rent that baby and figure out a 64 bit Flash player.

Zoner1501 Zoner1501 said:

The Air force just purchased 2,200 PlayStation 3 consoles for use in their supercomputer last year. I wonder how that worked out for them?

Guest said:

Is this China's new "Render network security inoperable so we can spy on Google and the rest of corporate America" computer?

peteyhawkins said:

Wouldnt mind building one of these myself. Would certainly make my day job of coding html and using photoshop easier.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

I am wondering what cluster os they are running. I am betting Red Hat enterprise. Red Hats pretty good for everything except storage from what i remember.

Aye. Red Hat and CUDA in general

Also what are they going to use this for? I hope they are keeping up with the application development for these.

Simulations (weather, economics, science, technology, weapons systems etc),analytical computation and nuclear reactor modelling....mainly.

For anyone who is interested, here is an interactive showing the 500 top supercomputers, which links back to the TOP500 list.

Tianhe-1A is actually the "old" Tianhe-1. The HD4870X2 graphics have just been replaced by the nvidia Tesla M2050's.

China has built the world's fastest supercomputer, stealing the crown from the United States

Probably not for long. Oak Ridge is already in full swing...

" [link] ."

Guest said:

And the machine spoke, "the answer to life the universe and everything = 42."

ChrisG683 said:

Now they can filter their internet at even faster speeds!

crzydave said:

All of their youth can now play WOW on the same computer.

xcelofjkl said:

All of your flops are belong to us!

ruzveh said:

Wow man.. can i have one at my place? Afteral todays computer is also yesterday's SuperComp.

grimm808 said:

That "thing" in the picture looks like John Henry Eden, our beloved future president, and leader of the Onclave. It also looks like it could cook me a couple of prime ribs.

jazboy said:

I believe US will come up with another super computer which will be 100 times faster than this one.

pirate083 said:

Great job........... Technology is improving unbelievably day by day............ building supercomputers, creating a fiber that can transfer files at 1TB\s speed, great to see these things............ but as long as they don't try to create a human brain.............!

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

The human brain, always imitated but, (thank God), never duplicated..... Or perhaps, "HAL learns to roll his own."....

....... but as long as they don't try to create a human brain.............!
Yeah really. Try and wrap your head around how difficult would it be to deal with a supercomputer that was addicted to crack, porn, and was absolutely dead certain that it was always right. Then imagine the astronomical phone bill that thing could run up, speed dialing 1-900 phone sex lines.

You'll know the end is near, when the thing starts spitting out plans for a USB crack pipe!

sMILEY4ever said:

Uvindu said:

It was about time... China is improving its infrastructure and stepping up. It won't be surprising to see them hold even more top spots in the coming years.

GO CHINA! SHOW WHAT A THIRD WORLD COUNTRY CAN DO!

Third world country? lol. Check their GDP.

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

In addition to sMILEY4ever's comment, don't forget Chinese has invested trillions in US economy (read debt re-financing) + they hold something near to 3 trillion in reserves. So factually, they are holding US in a pretty tight spot, if your brain can figure out ramifications of any changes in these facts.

DjKraid DjKraid said:

the real question is that @ what fps and setting does it run games? -any lagg

Who's paying the electrical bill? xD

Rage_3K_Moiz Rage_3K_Moiz, Sith Lord, said:

So, am I to assume from this that all supercomputers use only Intel and NVIDIA chips?

And if you had the world's fastest supercomputer, would you REALLY let the rest of the world know?

And I LOL'd @ "Procter & Gamble even uses supercomputers to make sure that Pringles go into cans without breaking. ". :p

arkantos said:

i wonder what processor do they use with those?? intel or amd

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.