Superfast computer starts up in Shandong
(China Daily)| Updated : 2018-08-07Print Print
China put a prototype "exascale" computing machine - the next-generation supercomputer - into operation on Sunday, developers said.
The exascale computer is able to perform 1 quintillion - or a billion billion - calculations per second.
The Sunway exascale computer prototype was developed by the National Research Center of Parallel Computer Engineering and Technology (NRCPC); the National Supercomputing Center in Jinan, Shandong province; and the Pilot National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology (Qingdao).
The NRCPC led the team that developed Sunway TaihuLight, crowned as the world's fastest computer two years in a row at the 2016 and 2017 International Supercomputing Conferences in Frankfurt, Germany.
"The Sunway exascale computer prototype is very much like a concept car that can run on the road," said Yang Meihong, director of the National Supercomputing Center in Jinan. "We expect to build exascale computer in the second half of 2020 or the first half of 2021."
Another prototype exascale supercomputer, the Tianhe-3, passed the acceptance tests on July 22. Its final version is expected to come out in 2020.
The two prototypes marked a further step toward China's successful development of the next-generation supercomputer.
Supercomputers are changing people's lives in fields such as weather forecasting, the calculation of ocean currents, financial data analysis, high-end equipment manufacturing and car collision simulations, said Pan Jingshan, deputy director of the National Supercomputing Center in Jinan.
In China, prototypes are being developed by three teams led by the NRCPC, Dawning Information Industry C. (Sugon) and National University of Defense Technology.
The United States and Japan are also speeding up the development of an exascale supercomputer, expecting to unveil one as early as 2021.