Supercomputers That Dominate the World

Posted in Gadgets & Reviews, Technology11 years ago • Written by MAKNo Comments

Supercomputers- defined as the fastest and most expensive type of computers able to process information and mathematical calculations at the fastest rate possible. Sci-fi movies often depict supercomputers as an “evil” entity which controls or exterminates human beings, but the depiction is nowhere near what supercomputers do for humanity. In fact, supercomputers are dedicated to solve key problems in our society; climate change, diseases and energy expenditure. Here is a list of the machines that help human beings solve global problems to make the world a better place to live in.


1. IBM’s Watson

Watson, the supercomputer from IBM is dedicated on cancer research; it has collaborated with Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center to provide doctors with the latest data on cancer. This collaboration creates an effective cancer diagnostic and treatment plan. How can Watson do this? The supercomputer is able to process whapping 500 gigabytes of information in just one second; this is just like reading 1 million books in a second. This capability to process such huge information can help scientist better understand what cancer is. This in turn, helps them plan how to diagnose and treat patients affected with the condition.

2. The Fujitsu K

This supercomputer is considered to be the fastest in the world, and it has to be if it has to protect millions from a tsunami. The Fujitsu K is designed to study seismic waves helping researchers predict the effects of tsunamis on infrastructures such as buildings. The data helps engineers improve the building design so they would end up more stable during earthquakes and tsunamis. Aside from that, the Fujitsu K super computer can also stimulate the action of electrons and atoms in solar cells. This can help in the development of solar cells that can convert energy with higher efficiency.

3. Tianhe-1A

Before the Fujitsu K, the fastest computer dominating our planet was Tianhe-1A from China. The name is literally translated as “river in the sky”. The supercomputer is able to deliver 2.51 petaflops at its maximum or peak performance. According to some experts, the supercomputer can perform 2.57 quadrillion calculations per second. The supercomputer is housed in the National Supercomputer Center in China, and it is reported that the machine is utilised for drug research, tsunami and hurricane modeling, cancer research, car designing and even in the research of galaxies.

4. The Titan

The U.S. is also making names in the field of supercomputers. Housed by the U.S. Department of Energy at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee, the supercomputer renamed the Titan is said to perform 20 quadrillion calculations in just a second. It is twice the amount of Fujitsu K from Japan. The supercomputer is previously named Jaguar, and is renamed Titan after undergoing a major upgrade. The Jaguar or Titan is used to study climate change and alternative technologies for energy.

5. Sierra for Fuel Efficiency

The supercomputer Sierra is used by the GE Global Research for the improvement of fuel injectors for the next batch of the company’s engines. The next fleet is hoped to require lesser fuel and would have few emissions. Currently, the study focuses on aircraft turbines, land based gas turbines and locomotives would also be considered in the future.

6. IBM’s Blue Gene P

This supercomputer is used to shed light on cancer, and the human genome. The IBM Blue Gene P powers a High Performance Computing Center in New Jersey and this center aims to do research on medical informatics and imaging, climate and the environment, genes and cancer as well.

The future for supercomputers is astounding; recently, an expert team from Germany is studying supercomputers that can simulate how the brain works. Supercomputers are also utilised to help understand conditions such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

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