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China made new progress in the race of supercomputers
Material posted: Publication date: 15-09-2017
China is financing the development of the world's first prototype of a supercomputer for exaflops computing. The speed of the system will amount to a trillion operations per second. The power of the country will be directed on support of programs of marine research.

In the ranking of the most powerful computers in the world, presented in June at the International conference of supercomputing in Frankfurt, the development of China belong to the first two lines. They take Sunway TaihuLight and Tianhe-2, which have a capacity of 125,43 and 54.9 petaflops petaflops respectively.

Entrenched in leading positions, China is interested in creating the world's first exaflops supercomputer, capable of performing a billion billion floating point calculations per second. This power will be useful for data intensive research in the South China sea.

To this end, China is ready to Finance at least three competing groups of developers: Sugon, Defense science and technology University of the PLA, who developed the Tianhe supercomputer, the Sunway involved in TahiuLight. The authorities want to choose a project that will provide the highest performance and be ready for immediate use after creation. It is expected that spending on the supercomputer range from one to two billion yuan (150-300 million).

The basis for sverkhmasshtabno facilities will become the city of Qingdao, the largest port in Shandong province, as there are a lot of institutions associated with ocean studies. In addition, here is the world's largest offshore data center, which will be directly related to ocean monitoring system.

China has invested heavily in deep-sea mining and implements the global project of the new silk road. As a result of these initiatives, the country will need to collect and process huge amounts of data.

The researchers believe that exaflops calculations will help to carry out a comprehensive modeling of the ocean and solve complex problems. Feng Lycan (Feng Liqiang), head of Marine Science Data Centre in Qingdao, believes the supercomputer will be able to collect all data related to the marine environment, to conduct a comprehensive analysis. As a result, China will achieve oceanic simulations with unprecedented high resolution will help to generate reliable predictions in such matters as climate change on the planet.

Exaflops race

Since the creation of a supercomputer is of strategic importance, and Titan national laboratory oak ridge, USA, is in fourth place in the ranking of the fastest devices in June, the Ministry of energy States decided to narrow the gap with China. It was announced on the financing of the six companies — AMD, Cray, HP, IBM, Intel, and Nvidia in the amount of $258 million in the field exaflops computing. Construction of a working prototype is scheduled for 2021.

To slow down competitors, in 2015 the US government even forbade Intel to supply the chips for projects on creation of supercomputers in China.

Despite this, China has announced the launch of a prototype device Tianhe-3 for genetic studies in the first quarter of 2017, with output at full capacity by 2020. Today, the country promise to demonstrate all the features of the new exaflops computer in 2019.

At the same time in August, national laboratory oak ridge beginning Assembly Summit — IBM–NVIDIA, which has a chance to become the most powerful supercomputer in the world. It is expected that the system will be available for research by January 2019.

/ wikimedia / Titan / PD

Exaflops supercomputers will give a boost to science, allowing you to create highly accurate simulations of biological systems and generate realistic models for constructing reliable forecasts (climate, social economy).

In the opinion of Tom Dunning (Thom Dunning), a chemistry Professor at the University of Washington, exaflops supercomputers is closely connected to national security because law enforcement organizations collect huge amounts of data that require processing. Due to the greater computing power of this information can be quickly analyzed to assess and anticipate potential threats.

Problems exaflops supercomputers

On the way to run supercomputer like China and the United States are few global problems. These devices emit enormous amounts of heat, which prevents the computer to achieve maximum performance, and brings with it a huge bill for electricity.

The second is the development of architecture that would effectively communicate to hundreds of thousands of processors and memory chips. The third difficulty is the lack of software that can scale up to one trillion calculations per second.

Steve Conway (Steve Conway), from the research Agency Riken, notesthat "race for exaflops", or otherwise advances the technology of supercomputers and artificial intelligence. He predicts that existing problems will be overcome, and the first exaflops supercomputers appear in the list of the 500 fastest computers in 2021 and 2023 will become more common.

Today the Chinese Sunway TaihuLight achieved a simulation of the Universe with 10 trillion of digital particles, and scientists from the University of Zurich recreated virtual 25 billion galaxies consisting of 2 trillion digital particles. In any case, in the race for exaflops win in the first place science.


Tags: China , science

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