Tuesday, 18 November 2014 23:28

The latest Top500 supercomputer list has been released Featured

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The latest Top500 supercomputer list has been released Top500.org

China still leads the race.

Overnight, at the SC14 conference in New Orleans, the twice-yearly Top500 list was revealed with probably the fewest changes in the top 10 we've ever seen.

The only new entry in the top 10 was the 10th-ranked unnamed machine which began operating at an undisclosed US government location.

China's Tianhe-2, developed by the National University of Defence Technology scored 33.86 petaflop/sec, and remains at number 1 for the fourth edition in a row. Currently, to enter the top 10, a performance of 3.57petaflop/sec is required. 1 petaflop/sec is required to reach the top 50 (a speed that would have claimed first place in 2008).

The US leads the table with 231 systems, China is second with 61 and Japan third with 32. Australia currently occupies 9th place with 9 entries in the Top500, the leading system being the Magnus unit at the Pawsey Supercomputing Centre in Western Australia occupying position 41 - the primary aim of this facility is to support the Square Kilometre Array radio telescope project in central WA and also in southern Africa. A second unit at Pawsey, Galaxy occupies position 329.

Just 14 units (none of which are in the top 80) run an operating system other than Linux (and all but two of those are AIX).

The oldest computer in the list is Shanghai's Magic Cube which entered the list in 2008 at position 11 and is currently ranked at 360. Magic Cube is also the only machine running Windows.

The compilers of the list noted that performance improvements seem to be lagging the long-term trend-line and the turn-over rate is the lowest in two decades with the 500th computer occupying position 421 in the June 2014 list.

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David Heath

David Heath has had a long and varied career in the IT industry having worked as a Pre-sales Network Engineer (remember Novell NetWare?), General Manager of IT&T for the TV Shopping Network, as a Technical manager in the Biometrics industry, and as a Technical Trainer and Instructional Designer in the industrial control sector. In all aspects, security has been a driving focus. Throughout his career, David has sought to inform and educate people and has done that through his writings and in more formal educational environments.

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