World's fastest supercomputer entirely made in China: survey

Published: June 20, 2016
The photo shows a new Chinese supercomputer called Sunway TaihuLight on Monday, June 20, 2016. Photo: CCTV News

The photo shows a new Chinese supercomputer called Sunway TaihuLight on Monday, June 20, 2016. Photo: CCTV News

BEIJING: China has built the world’s fastest supercomputer using locally made microchips, a survey said Monday, the first time the country has taken the top spot without using US technology.

The Sunway TaihuLight machine is twice as fast as the previous number one, which was built in China with chips from US firm Intel, the Top500 survey of supercomputers said on its website

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China also has more top-ranked supercomputers than the US for the first time since the survey began, with 167 compared to 165.

Located at China’s national supercomputer centre in the eastern city of Wuxi, the Sunway TaihuLight will be used for climate modelling and life science research.

Its performance ends “speculation that China would have to rely on Western technology to compete effectively in the upper echelons of supercomputing,” the survey’s website said.

The supercomputers on the Top500 list, which is produced twice a year, are rated based on speed in a benchmark test by experts from Germany and the US.

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Of the top ten fastest computers, two are in China, with four in the US, the ranking said. Others are in Japan, Germany, Switzerland and Saudi Arabia.

China has poured money into big-ticket science and technology projects as it seeks to become a high-tech leader.

It plans to open the world’s largest radio telescope in southeastern China this year, state-media reported.

But despite some gains the country’s scientific output still lags behind, and its universities generally fare poorly in global rankings.

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Reader Comments (4)

  • Basit
    Jun 20, 2016 - 2:45PM

    IMO the fact that their domestically manufactured CPUs have reached this level is bigger news than construction of this super computer. The world needs a strong competitor to Intel in the desktop and server space. Perhaps the Chinese will supply us with one?Recommend

  • Aakashvaani
    Jun 20, 2016 - 4:03PM

    Saudi Arabia has a computer. What do they do with it? Calculate the co-efficient of Jinn voltage or maybe its for the ministry of prevention of vice. haRecommend

  • Emma Morrow
    Jun 20, 2016 - 5:39PM

    Any time ANY government says it’s using their supercomputers for “climate modelling and life science research” or “stellar fusion research” or “modeling the Big Bang” they are just lying.

    The real reason governments buy these supercomputers is to help spy on their own people’s use of the internet and other forms of communication. America is the most evil in this regard, but every major government is guilty.Recommend

  • Basit
    Jun 21, 2016 - 8:04PM

    Saudi Aramco does have supercomputers. They use it for petroleum industry research.Recommend

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