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IBM tops supercomputer list, AMD gains ground

Posted by iTech - 2006-07-01

The Top list of the world&;s fastest supercomputers was released Wednesday with IBM&;s BlueGene continuing to reign and Advanced Micro Devices&;s (AMD&;s) Opteron processor powering more systems on the list than last year.
 
Retaining the number one spot on the biannual list for the fourth time IBM&;s BlueGene/L System at the U.S. Department of Energy&;s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory recently reached a Linpack benchmark performance of . teraflops or trillions of calculations per second. No other system has yet passed the TFlop/s mark.

IBM supercomputers accounted for about half of the overall list with HewlettPackard Co. taking nearly a third of the list which was released at the International Supercomputing Conference in Dresden Germany.

The Top list known for its rapid turnover showed slower than average turnover rate this year. Some systems were bumped this time around compared to more than systems displaced in the June list. But in the fastpaced world of highperformance supercomputing no systems maker can afford to rest on its laurels for long especially at the high end of the list.

&;The thresholds to get into the top move fast; machines are there one day gone the next&; said Herb Schultz manager for IBM Blue Gene.

&;In the next six months you should see discussions about what&;s next. It&;s no secret Blue Gene has been in the market for a little while and we&;re looking at ways to make the chips faster get more chips on a core and do a faster job of interconnecting nodes. So you could expect to see a product with the same architecture but that&;s faster and maintains the same power and cooling envelope as the current Blue Gene does&; Schultz said.

Among other trends on the list Intel microprocessors powered of the systems which was down from last year; while AMD??s Opteron processors gained some ground to account for systems compared to only systems one year ago.

Most of the supercomputers on the list nearly are housed in the U.S. Europe now has systems which is down from systems they had six months ago. Meanwhile Asia has systems which is up from six months ago.



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