China's Tianhe-2 Remains Atop Fastest Supercomputer List

By Jeffrey Burt  |  Posted 2015-11-19

There wasn't much change at the top end of the latest Top500 list of the world's fastest supercomputers. There were only two new systems listed in the top 10, and overall, the twice yearly list's organizers said that the average performance of all 500 systems continued a slowing trend that started in 2008. Six of the Top 10 systems were installed in 2011 or 2012. Tianhe-2 was installed in 2013, and Trinity, Hazel Hen and Shaheen II in 2015. However, there were changes at lower levels of the list, including China's growing presence at the expense of the United States and Europe. In the top 10, China's Tianhe-2—which means "Milky Way"—supercomputer, housed at the country's National University of Defense Technology, retains its position at the top of the list, almost doubling the performance of Titan, which is No. 2. The two new systems in the top 10 are both based on Cray's Intel Xeon-based XC40 servers, and at the top of the list, four of the fastest 10 used either GPU accelerators from Nvidia or Intel's x86-based Xeon Phi coprocessors to help increase performance while holding down power consumption. This eWEEK slide show takes a look at those systems in the top 10.


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