UK leads European supercomputer league table

The UK leads the European supercomputer league table, but China’s Nebulae is chasing the US Jaguar for the title of fastest system in the world.

Figures released yesterday [31/05/10] by the TOP500 - an academic project that ranks and details the 500 most powerful known computer systems globally - puts the UK on 38 systems (down from 45 six months six ago), but still ahead of nearest European rivals France (29) and Germany (24).

Germany hosts the most powerful supercomputer in Europe, an IBM BlueGene systems clocked at speeds of 825.5 teraflops per second according to the TOP500 Linpack benchmark.

The fastest in the world is owned by the US Department of Energy, however. Its Jaguar system runs at speeds of up to 1.75 petaflops per second, marginally ahead of China’s Nebulae system which achieved 1.27 Pflop/s. Measured differently however, Nebulae is ahead on theoretical peak performance of 2.98 Pflop/s.

Over 81 per cent of the systems featured in the TOP500 were built on Intel CPUs, and only 9.4 per cent on AMD equivalents, and 8.4 per cent on IBM chips.

IBM and HP continue to sell most supercomputers and high performance computing (HPC) systems with 40 per cent and 37 per cent of the TOP500 respectively. The majority go into either academic or government research environments.

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