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IBM is currently developing a supercomputer it hopes will be able to deliver 20 petaflops per second

IBM announced ambitious plans to create a new supercomputer that will be 20 times faster than its current Roadrunner supercomputer.  The new supercomputer, dubbed "Sequoia," will operate at a whopping 20 petaflops, and is significantly faster than IBM's previous supercomputers.

The new supercomputer will be used at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, California, and will allow researchers to use the powerful computer for simulations of U.S. nuclear weapons.  Lawrence Livermore is using the IBM BlueGene/L system until Sequoia is ready.

The system will be stored and used in a 3,422 sq. ft. building in Livermore -- it will be energy efficient, with IBM expecting it to use 6 megawatts per year, which is equivalent to 500 American homes. 

Sequoia may be able to provide a 40- to 50-fold improvement in the country's ability to provide data, including severe storm forecasting, earthquake predictions and evacuation routes due to national emergency, IBM said in a statement.

The system will use 45nm processors that have up to 16 cores per chip, and will have 1.6 petabytes of memory shared by 1.6 million cores.  It will be 15 times faster than BlueGene/P and have the same footprint with only a "modest" increase in power consumption.

IBM's latest announcement comes just seven months after IBM delivered the fastest supercomputer, Roadrunner, to the U.S. Department of Energy's Los Alamos National Laboratory.  The supercomputer was the first system to break the 1 petaflop barrier, clocking in at 1.026 petaflops.

IBM also is working on other supercomputers that will be used by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), and should be available before 2011.



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Department of Redundancy Department
By Mclendo06 on 2/3/2009 3:42:01 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
IBM is currently developing a supercomputer it hopes will be able to deliver 20 petaflops per second

Sorry, just a pet peeve of mine, but FLOPS stands for "Floating Point Operations Per Second". Unless this computer computationally accelerates, you need to change this line in the article.

/soapbox




By jnn4v on 2/3/2009 4:22:49 PM , Rating: 4
And is it really 20 petaflops? If so, at least one of the following statements from the article describing its relative performance doesn't make sense:

quote:
IBM announced ambitious plans to create a new supercomputer that will be 20 times faster than its current Roadrunner supercomputer.

quote:
It will be 15 times faster than BlueGene/P

quote:
IBM's latest announcement comes just seven months after IBM delivered the fastest supercomputer, Roadrunner, to the U.S. Department of Energy's Los Alamos National Laboratory. The supercomputer was the first system to break the 1 petaflop barrier, clocking in at 1.026 petaflops.


So following that logic, BlueGene/P would be faster than RoadRunner. And as of the November 2008 list, BlueGene/P was #5 on the Top500 whereas RoadRunner was #1.


RE: Department of Redundancy Department
By LRonaldHubbs on 2/3/2009 4:24:55 PM , Rating: 5
It depends upon the capitalization. If someone says FLOPS, all caps, then it is assumed to mean FLoating point Operations Per Second. However, FLOP without the capital 'S' is singular - FLoating point OPeration - and putting a lower-case 's' on the end makes it plural, FLOPs = FLoating point OPerations. This is commonly substituted with all lower case, flop(s) to avoid confusion with the rate acronym. The usage of this lower-case form is acknowledged in various dictionaries and on Wikipedia.

In the case of this article, the lower-case noun form was used, followed by a verbal rate quantifier. It's more work to write than the traditional acronym form, but it is stil correct.


RE: Department of Redundancy Department
By jbartabas on 2/3/2009 5:10:53 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
However, FLOP without the capital 'S' is singular - FLoating point OPeration - and putting a lower-case 's' on the end makes it plural, FLOPs = FLoating point OPerations. This is commonly substituted with all lower case, flop(s) to avoid confusion with the rate acronym.


So what does this mean:

quote:
The new supercomputer, dubbed "Sequoia," will operate at a whopping 20 petaflops , and is significantly faster than IBM's previous supercomputers.


with all lower case?

quote:
The usage of this lower-case form is acknowledged in various dictionaries and on Wikipedia.


Can we have references? 'flop' without a 's' does not bring anything in Wikipedia, section Acronyms.


By jbartabas on 2/3/2009 5:34:41 PM , Rating: 2
Ok, I've found it (that wasn't that hard after all :_( ). There does not seem to be a distinction between usage with upper/lower case. It sounds like a bad idea to use both in the same article, and/or without proper definition.


By marvdmartian on 2/4/2009 9:58:30 AM , Rating: 2
What pickup line do IBM computer geeks use when trying to pick up girls in the bar?

"Hey baby.....want to come over to my place and see my petaflop???"


“We do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone.” -- Steve Jobs











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