Rajeeb Hazra, general manager of Technical Computing at Intel, said his company plans to meet the exascale, 20 MW goal by 2018, one year ahead of the U.S. government's expectation. He made this remark during the announcement of the company's unveiling of the Knights Corner, its new 50-core processor that's capable of one teraflop of sustained performance.
While the hardware makers deal with power and performance issues, exascale, as is petaflop computing, is providing HPC users with challenges in scaling codes to fully use these systems.
Before reaching exascale, vendors will produce systems that can scale into the hundreds of petaflops. IBM, for instance, says the new system Blue Gene/Q will be capable of 100 petaflops.
Kim Cupps, the computing division leader and Sequoia project manager at Lawrence Livermore, will be happy with 20 petaflops.
"We're thrilled to have to have this machine so close to our grasp," said Cupps, or her 20 petaflop system. "We are going to solve many problems of national importance, ranging from material's modeling, weapons science, climate change and energy modeling."
Of IBM's claim that its system can scale to 100 petaflops, "that's IBM saying that," said Cupps, "I'll vouch for 20."
Patrick Thibodeau covers SaaS and enterprise applications, outsourcing, government IT policies, data centers and IT workforce issues for Computerworld. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @DCgov or subscribe to Patrick's RSS feed. His email address is email@example.com.
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