Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

IBM Working on 10 Petaflop Supercomputer

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 33 comments

IBM is building a new supercomputer based on its Power7 processor.

Softpedia reports that IBM's octo-core Power7 microprocessor will play a part in the construction of a new supercomputer capable of an initial peak performance of 10 petaflops. The new computer will be named Blue Waters and will be based at the University of Illinois.

According to SP, the machine will become operational next year and will have a theoretical peak computing capability of 16 petaflops. While this will supposedly be achievable by connecting up to 16,384 Power7 nodes, IBM doesn't expect the initial performance to surpass the 10-petaflops mark.

Aside from utilizing water cooling to keep heat under control, Ed Seminaro, an IBMer working on project, says the team has taken extra steps to make the project a little more environmentally friendly. "We took a lot of the infrastructure that's typically inside of the computer room for cooling and powering and moved the equivalent of that infrastructure right into that same cabinet with the server, storage, and interconnect hardware,” Seminaro says. “The whole rack is water-cooled. We actually water-cool the processor directly to pull the heat out. We take it right to water, which is very power efficient.”

So just how fast is this capable-of-10-petaflops supercomputer? Seminaro goes on to say, "The transfer of data between any of those two nodes in the system is at the full rate of 192GB per second—peak. So, you can get data from anyplace to anyplace at that kind of speed with latency on the order of less than one microsecond.”

Check out the full story here.

Follow us on Twitter for more tech news and exclusive updates here.

Display 33 Comments.
This thread is closed for comments
Top Comments
  • 18 Hide
    pbrigido , December 8, 2009 3:05 PM
    I think I will hurt the next person who makes a reference to a computer and its ability to play Crysis.
  • 15 Hide
    ssalim , December 8, 2009 5:37 PM
    deathmustardthe comp in my room can only do at peak 9 petaflops so this one is pretty good.


    No, you are mistaken. Your comp in your room can only flop. Sorry.
  • 11 Hide
    obiown77 , December 8, 2009 3:13 PM
    pbrigidoI think I will hurt the next person who makes a reference to a computer and its ability to play Crysis.


    ya man, enough talk about Crysis (1) already, I'm getting sick of hearing that crap aswell..



    I wonder if this machine could prevent a cpu bottleneck when Crysis 2 is released?
Other Comments
  • 6 Hide
    Abrahm , December 8, 2009 2:52 PM
    I was at this facility last year and they talked about the blue waters project. Really amazing place. Can't wait to see that thing in action, and what they can do with it.
  • 18 Hide
    pbrigido , December 8, 2009 3:05 PM
    I think I will hurt the next person who makes a reference to a computer and its ability to play Crysis.
  • 11 Hide
    obiown77 , December 8, 2009 3:13 PM
    pbrigidoI think I will hurt the next person who makes a reference to a computer and its ability to play Crysis.


    ya man, enough talk about Crysis (1) already, I'm getting sick of hearing that crap aswell..



    I wonder if this machine could prevent a cpu bottleneck when Crysis 2 is released?
  • 5 Hide
    cryogenic , December 8, 2009 3:26 PM
    Call me when they announce the first supercomputer with one yottaflop :) , or maybe whit one xeraflop if I'll still be alive by then ...



  • 2 Hide
    scryer_360 , December 8, 2009 3:33 PM
    Why doesn't IBM sell their processors at retail? I know some of what we read about here is enterprise grade only, but it seems to me that very little keeps them from making processors for hp, dell or acer.

    Which means, I am probably missing something.
  • 0 Hide
    Ehsan w , December 8, 2009 4:00 PM
    CryogenicCall me when they announce the first supercomputer with one yottaflop , or maybe whit one xeraflop if I'll still be alive by then ...


    oh man I hope so,
    by that time we wont even have to think for ourselves XD
  • -7 Hide
    El_Capitan , December 8, 2009 4:04 PM
    I think I will hurt the next person who makes a reference to hurting a person who makes a reference to a computer and it's ability to play Crysis.
  • -6 Hide
    igot1forya , December 8, 2009 4:33 PM
    scook9All I can say is that I still play Crysis regularly and it is still a pretty good benchmark on real world hardware performanceAnd this computer should be able to play Crysis

    I doubt it will have more than an 8MB video card (if it even has one)... although, it probably wont have problems running in software, probably make a good dedicated server though.
  • 15 Hide
    ssalim , December 8, 2009 5:37 PM
    deathmustardthe comp in my room can only do at peak 9 petaflops so this one is pretty good.


    No, you are mistaken. Your comp in your room can only flop. Sorry.
  • 4 Hide
    zak_mckraken , December 8, 2009 6:01 PM
    Can it play Solitaire?
  • 5 Hide
    tipoo , December 8, 2009 6:10 PM
    Petaflops? Units of animal cruelty?


    *Collective groan*


    More on topic...The Power7 looks like it will be a monster. 8 cores per chip, 2 chips per module, 4 threads per core...You do the math.
  • 4 Hide
    omnimodis78 , December 8, 2009 6:13 PM
    El_CapitanI think it will play Crysis.

    Seriously? How old are you?
  • 7 Hide
    anamaniac , December 8, 2009 6:27 PM
    tipooPetaflops? Units of animal cruelty?*Collective groan*More on topic...The Power7 looks like it will be a monster. 8 cores per chip, 2 chips per module, 4 threads per core...You do the math.

    4 threads per core. :o 

    Go IBM. =D
  • 0 Hide
    tipoo , December 8, 2009 6:28 PM
    anamaniac4 threads per core. Go IBM. =D


    Yep...Too bad they aren't in the consumer space, eh?
  • -3 Hide
    AtuBrian , December 8, 2009 6:57 PM
    pbrigidoI think I will hurt the next person who makes a reference to a computer and its ability to play Crysis.

    omfg me to really annoying now
Display more comments