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The fastest supercomputer in the world is a million times more powerful than a laptop

Researchers at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) unveiled the fastest supercomputer in the world. The machine was named Summit and it has the size of two tennis courts, consisting of 4,608 servers.

Thus, the supercomputer can achieve a performance of 200 petaflops. In other words, it can achieve about 200 quadrillion calculations per second. Summit has officially surpassed the previous record, set by China’s Sunway TaihuLight supercomputer, which can only reach 93 petaflops.

In this way, the United States is again ranked first in the top 500 supercomputers in the world, a position it held back in 2013, just before Tianhe-2 was built.

Summit is powered by 6 GPU Nvidia Tesla V100 and two IBM 22-core POWER9™ chips. The 4,608 servers have a total memory of 10 petabytes. The supercomputer is a million times faster than a regular laptop. Summit will be used for various tasks related to artificial intelligence and neural networks.

Summit specs and features:

  • Processor: IBM POWER9™
  • GPUs: NVIDIA Volta™
  • Nodes: ~4600
  • Node Performance: >40TFMemory/node: 512GB DDR4 + HBM
  • NV Memory/node: 1600GB
  • Total System Memory: >10PB DDR4 + HBM + Non-volatile
  • Interconnect Topology: Non-blocking InfiniBand Fat Tree
  • Peak Power Consumption: 15MW

It can analyze vast amounts of information, such as photo databases or medical records, and can even identify unknown causes of illness in this way. Summit will be used for medical research, but also to design a nuclear fusion reactor.

Researchers hope that by 2021 a supercomputer will be even faster, making up to one billion billion calculations per second.