[LINK] Top500 supercomputers

stephen at melbpc.org.au stephen at melbpc.org.au
Sat Jun 21 01:00:21 AEST 2008

Top 500 supercomputers: 
Welcome to the petaflop generation
Submitted by Layer 8 on Wed, 06/18/2008 - 10:06am.
Welcome to the petaflop generation. That was the message today as the new 
most powerful supercomputer in the world IBM's $100 million Roadrunner 
system installed at the Department of Energy's Los Alamos National 
Laboratory was officially named the most powerful and energy efficient 
supercomputer in the world. 


The TOP500 list of the world's most powerful supercomputers was unveiled 
at the International Supercomputing Conference in Dresden and proclaimed 
that Roadrunner achieved performance of 1.026 petaflop/s-becoming the 
first supercomputer ever to reach that performance milestone. 

At the same time, Roadrunner is also one of the most energy efficient 
systems on the TOP500. 

Rounding out the top positions, all of which are in the US are the new IBM 
BlueGene/P (450.3 teraflop/s) at DOE's Argonne National Laboratory .. the 
new Sun SunBlade x6420 "Ranger" system (326 teraflop/s) at the Texas 
Advanced Computing Center at the University of Texas - Austin .. and the 
upgraded Cray XT4 "Jaguar" (205 teraflop/s) at DOE's Oak Ridge National 

The No. 6 system is the top system outside the US, installed in Germany at 
the Forschungszentrum Juelich. It is an IBM BlueGene/P system and was 
measured at 180 Tflop/s. 

The No. 7 system is installed at a new center, the New Mexico Computing 
Applications Center in Rio Rancho, NM. It is built by SGI and based on the 
Altix ICE 8200 model. It was measured at 133.2 Tflop/s. 

The Computational Research Laboratories, a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata 
Sons Ltd. in Pune, India, installed a Hewlett-Packard Cluster Platform 
3000 BL460c system. They integrated this system with their own routing 
technology and achieved a performance of 132.8 Tflop/s which was 
sufficient for No. 8, the survey noted. 

The No. 9 system is a new BlueGene/P system installed at the Institut du 
Développement et des Ressources en Informatique Scientifique (IDRIS) in 
France, which was measured at 112.5 Tflop/s. 

The last new system in the TOP10 - at No. 10 - is also an SGI Altix ICE 
8200 system. It is the biggest system installed at an industrial customer, 
Total Exploration Production. It was ranked based on a Linpack performance 
of 106.1 Tflop/s, according to TOP500.

Among all systems, Intel continues to grow, with Intel processors now 
found in 75% of the TOP500 supercomputers, up from 70.8 % of the 30th list 
released last November. 

The US leads the world in supercomputer systems with 257 of the top 500. 

The European share (184 systems - up from 149) is still rising and is 
again larger then the Asian share (48 - down from 58 systems). Dominant 
countries in Asia are Japan with 22 systems (up from 20), China with 12 
systems (up from 10), India with 6 systems (down from 9), and Taiwan with 
3 (down from 11), according to the survey. In Europe, UK remains the No. 1 
with 53 systems (48 six months ago). Germany improved but is still in the 
No. 2 spot with 46 systems (31 six months ago), the survey found. 

The group notes a number of other features from the survey: 

* Quad-core processor based systems have taken over the TOP500 quite 
rapidly. Already 283 systems are using them. Two hundred three systems are 
using dual-core processors, only eleven systems still use single core 
processors, and three systems use IBM's advanced Sony PlayStation 3 
processor with 9 cores. 

* The top industrial customer, at No. 10, is the French oil company: Total 
Exploration Production. 

* IBM held on to its lead in systems with 210 systems (42%) over Hewlett 
Packard with 183 systems (36.6%). IBM had 232 systems (46.4%) six months 
ago, compared to HP with 166 systems (33.2%). 

* IBM remains the clear leader in the TOP500 list in performance with 48 
percent of installed total performance (up from 45), compared to HP with 
22.4% (down from 23.9). In the system category Dell, SGI and Cray follow 
with 5.4 , 4.4 and 3.2 % respectively. 

* The last system on the list would have been listed at position 200 in 
the previous TOP500 just six months ago. This is the largest turnover rate 
in the 16-year history of the TOP500 project. 

With this survey, its 31st since 1993, the TOP500 began measuring computer 
efficiency as well. The TOP500 most energy efficient supercomputers are: 

* IBM QS22 Cell processor blades (up to 488 Mflop/s/Watt)

* IBM BlueGene/P systems (up to 376 Mflop/s/Watt) 

* Intel Harpertown quad-core blades are catching up fast

* IBM BladeCenter HS21with low-power processors (up to 265 Mflop/s/Watt) 

* SGI Altix ICE 8200EX Xeon quad-core nodes, (up to 240 Mflop/s/Watt)

* Hewlett-Packard Cluster Platform 3000 BL2x220 with double density blades 
(up to 227 Mflop/s/Watt) 

* These systems are already ahead of BlueGene/L (up to 210 Mflop/s/Watt). 

* The average power consumption of a TOP10 system is 1.32 Mwatt and 
average power efficiency is 248 Mflop/s/Watt. 

* The average power consumption of a TOP50 system is 908 Kwatt and average 
power efficiency is 193 Mflop/s/Watt. 

* The average Power consumption of a TOP500 system is 257 Mwatt and 
average power efficiency is 122 Mflop/s/Watt.

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