Japan's K Computer Is the Fastest of Them All, Topping 10 Petaflops

Illustration for article titled Japan's K Computer Is the Fastest of Them All, Topping 10 Petaflops

The K supercomputer just got a bit quicker—boosting its computational output to 10.5 quadrillion calculations per second and making it the speediest number-crunching system on the planet.


The K Computer was built by the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology (MoMESST) in conjunction with the Fujitsu Corporation and specifically aimed towards breaking the 10 petaflop barrier.

It employs processing clusters of over 88,000 specially-designed HPC Fujitsu SPARC64 VIIIfx chips as well as 864 server racks to perform its computational feats. The K currently resides at Fujitsu's RIKEN lab in Kobe, Japan.

According to industry benchmarks, the K computer is performing at 93 percent efficiency. However, given that it burned through $9.89 million of electricity yearly when it ran at just one petaflop, I'd rather not see the lab's current utility bill. [Wired]

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Based on the electricity costs, I'd say there is a long way to go towards lower energy computing.

I mean, sure, this beast is a one-of-a-kind bleeding edge machine, but you might also expect such high tech to be bleeding edge in terms of resource requirements.

Then again, maybe it is.