Fujitsu’s ‘K’ is the fastest supercomputer on the planet

20 Jun 2011

China’s Tianhe-1A supercomputer has been knocked from first place as the world’s fastest computer by Japan’s K, built by Fujitsu, which is capable of making 8.2 quadrillion (8.2 petaflops) calculations per second.

The Chinese Tianhe-1A previously held the world record and was able to calculate at 2.5 petaflops.

The rankings were compiled by Jack Dongarra, professor of electrical engineering at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

K, which is based in Kobe’s Riken Advanced Institute for Computational Science, is equal to the performance of 1m linked desktop computers.

It consists of 672 cabinets full of circuit boards.

According to The New York Times, it uses enough electricity to power almost 10,000 homes and costs US$10m a year to run.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years