Supercomputers have been for decades machines that have demonstrated remarkable performance in terms of performing thousands of operations simultaneously, which, over time, have increased their capabilities in order to make them more efficient and efficient. precise in this and other tasks.
Thus, countries of great technological power such as China, the United States or Japan have been implicitly competing to see who holds the title of the country with the most powerful supercomputer in the world.
This time the leading position on this list is occupied by Japan thanks to Fugaku, a supercomputer whose characteristics and performance have far surpassed machines that until now were considered the most powerful.
This is how Fugaku is placed at the top of the Top500 of supercomputers, a list in which only the most powerful machines in the world are included and in which this supercomputer obtained an index in its calculation capacity of 415.5 petaflops as a result of the HPL test. (High Performance Linpack), which is intended to determine the level of performance generated by these machines.
It should be noted that Summit, the supercomputer belonging to the United States, which until now was leading the Top500, obtained an index of 148.8 petaflops in this same test, a fact that shows the superiority of the new Japanese colossus if we take into account its calculation capacity. to perform floating point operations.
However, there is one fact that makes Fugaku a surprising supercomputer and it is the fact that this machine can reach peaks of up to 1000 petaflops or, what is the same, 1 exaflop in situations where precision floating point operations are required. simple, a situation that usually occurs with algorithms of artificial intelligence and machine learning.
Supercomputer with ARM architecture
With respect to its origins, Fugaku is part of the supercomputing center located in Kobe designated by the name of RIKEN in which the engineers in charge of its manufacture chose to use Fujitsu A64FX SoC microprocessors. These include a total of 48 ARM cores, a feature that makes the Fugaku the first supercomputer equipped with ARM architecture, enough to rank first in the Top500.
The team in charge of managing Fugaku has said that it will be until 2021 when this supercomputer is put into operation, at which time it will be used to boost scientific projects that could be favored by its prodigious calculation capacity.
Along with this, the team in charge of Fugaku assures that the machine will play a key role in what concerns the diagnosis of COVID-19, being used to carry out studies aimed at knowing in depth the characteristics of this virus that still continues to wreak havoc around of the world.
In addition to Fugaku and Summit, the other supercomputers that are in the first places are the Sierra, a machine with a power of 94.6 petaflops belonging to the Lawrence National Laboratory in California followed by the Sunway TaihuLight, a Chinese supercomputer that has a power of 93 petaflops.