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IBM's Bluegene leads the Top 500 list

ISC 12 Intel feels IBM's Power
Mon Jun 18 2012, 14:55
IBM SuperMUC supercomputer

IBM HAS RECLAIMED the top spot on the Top 500 supercomputer list with the Sequoia cluster sporting 1,572,864 cores.

One of IBM's line of Bluegene clusters, Sequoia has taken the top spot in the Top 500 list away from Japan's K-Computer. Powered by IBM's Power chips, the Sequoia cluster made its debut six months ago, coming in at the 17th spot, but thanks to an almost three-fold increase in core count the Linux based cluster has managed to blow the K-Computer out of the water.

IBM's Sequoia is installed at the US Department of Energy's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and clocked a Rmax Linpack score of 16.3PFLOPS, 60 per cent higher than that of the K-Computer, which was the first cluster to break the 10PFLOPS barrier last year. While IBM is riding high on the Top 500, Intel is feeling the pressure as Xeon based systems feature in only four of the clusters in the top 10 and none of the top three.

While Intel's Xeon Phi accelerator made its debut, the firm was left to play up the adoption of its Xeon E5 processors that were released back in March. The only problem for Intel is that just two of the four Xeon clusters in the top 10 use its new chips.

Intel however did fare a lot better than AMD, which has just one entry in the top 10 with the Jaguar cluster still managing to stay in the top 10 after a number of years. Nevertheless, the June 2012 Top 500 list is definitely a strong showing for IBM, with Bluegene based clusters coming in at the first, third, seventh and eighth places. µ


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