Fujitsu aims for 10-petaflop supercomputer

The machine will be based on Fujitsu's eight-core Sparc64 processor

Fujitsu aims to deliver by early 2011 a 10-petaflop supercomputer, which would be almost 10 times more powerful than today's fastest system.

Fujitsu is building the supercomputer for Japan's Institute of Physical and Chemical Research, known as RIKEN, said Takumi Maruyama, head of Fujitsu's processor development department, on the sidelines of the Hot Chips conference at Stanford University on Tuesday.

The system will be based on Fujitsu's upcoming Sparc64 VIIIfx processor, which has eight processor cores and will be an update to the four-core Sparc64 VII chip that Fujitsu released two years ago, Maruyama said.

It remains to be seen if Fujitsu can achieve its goal, and it's likely that other system builders are plotting similarly powerful machines.

IBM has said it will build a "petascale" supercomputer based on its upcoming Power7 processor for the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. That machine, dubbed Blue Waters, is also due in 2011.

Today's fastest machine is IBM's Roadrunner system at the U.S. Department of Energy's Los Alamos National Laboratory, which was rated at 1.105 petaflops on June's Top500 list of supercomputers. A petaflop is equal to one thousand trillion calculations per second.

Maruyama gave the first in-depth look at the Sparc64 VIIIfx on Tuesday. Each of its eight cores runs at 2GHz and accesses 5MB of L2 cache memory. The processor can achieve 128 Gflops performance while drawing 58 watts of power, he said.

It's based on the same Sparc9 instruction set as other Sparc processors, but adds a set of supercomputing extensions known as HPC-ACE, Maruyama said.

While Fujitsu is already planning for the RIKEN machine, it isn't saying yet when the new Sparc64 chip will be available for other systems.

Fujitsu's current Sparc64 chip, the four-core Sparc64 VII, is sold in Unix servers from Fujitsu and Sun Microsystems. It would be "technically possible" to put the eight-core chip in those machines, but Fujitsu has no plans yet to do so, Maruyama said.

Several chip vendors are presenting papers at Hot Chips about eight-core server processors.

IBM is due to discuss its Power7 processor later Tuesday afternoon. That product is due in systems in the first half of next year.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags supercomputersprocessorsFujitsupetaflopsparc64hpcPower7

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

James Niccolai

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?