Industry experts announced on Monday a new leader for the TOP500 list of supercomputers. Like the old number one, the new king in the land of supercomputers is yet again a Chinese-manufactured system, called Sunway TaihuLight.

This new supercomputer was set up over the past year, scores 93 petaflops of computing power on the LINPACK benchmark, and is installed at a manufacturing and technology hub in China, in the city of Wuxi, west of Shanghai.

TaihuLight beats the previous TOP500 supercomputer champion Tianhe-2 by a factor of three in the LINPACK benchmark.

Created entirely with Chinese components

What’s unique about TaihuLight is that unlike Tianhe-2, this supercomputer was manufactured using components built entirely in China.

Its creators say TaihuLight uses ShenWei processors, which are 100 percent manufactured in China. Additionally, there is also a new custom interconnect module, also built inside the country as well.

The supercomputer uses a ShenWei 260-core chip in every of its 40,960 nodes. The LINPACK benchmark result of 93 petaflops gives an average value for a specific set of numerical linear algebra operations. In theory, TaihuLight should be able to produce 125 petaflops in peak production mode.

Additionally, each TaihuLight node comes with 32 GB of memory, giving the supercomputer a total memory of 1.3 PB.

TaihuLight to be used for weather forecasts, manufacturing, and analytics

The National Research Center of Parallel Computer Engineering & Technology (NRCPC) was the Chinese organization behind TaihuLight. Researchers plan to use their new supercomputer for research, engineering, analytics, and climate prediction models.

They also plan to unveil more details about their work at the International Supercomputing Conference (ISC), tomorrow in Germany. A report on the Sunway TaihuLight system is available here.

TaihuLight is the successor of Sunway BlueLight, a 796 teraflop supercomputer, developed in 2011, and deployed at the National Supercomputing Center in the city of Jinan, in East China, at the middle distance between Shanghai and Beijing.

SunWay TaihuLight architecture

SunWay TaihuLight architecture

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