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The supercomputer

A group of university researchers state they have bulild the fastest super computer in the world


The Purdue supercomputer Conte was ranked the fastest university owned. However the supercomputer ranking released in the June 2013 rankings says that a Chinese supercomputer – the Tianhe-2 – has leapt to the top of the latest Top 500 List, which tracks the fastest supercomputers in the world.

Conte was developed in a collaboration with HP, Intel, and Mellanox and built to help faculty, scientists, engineers, and researchers at Purdue University.

Conte can process a problem 15,000 times faster than a high end consumer laptop. Purdue Vice President of Information Technology, Gerry McCartney says Conte is the sixth research supercomputer Purdue has designed.

The supercomputer was built for $4.6 million, $2 million coming from faculty members contributing a portion of their federal research funding through Purdue´s Community Cluster program and named Conte after Samuel Conte who helped establish the nation´s first computer science program at Purdue in 1962.

Conte was built with 580 HP ProLiant SL250 Generation 8 (Gen8) servers, two Intel Xeon processors, two Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors, and integrated with Mellanox 56Gb/S FDR InfiniBand.

The supercomputer has a clocked maximum speed of 943.38 teraflops and a peak performance of 1.342 petaflops.

The Top 500 list is, as the name suggests, a list of the top 500 most powerful supercomputers on the planet. The list is compiled twice a year by Professor Hans Meuer of the University of Mannheim in Germany, Professor Jack Dongarra of the University of Tennesee, Knoxville, and Erich Stromaier and Horst Simon of the Lawrence Berkely National Laboratory.

As with previous lists, the United States dominates the field in terms of the sheer number of systems. There are 252 American supercomputers on the list, up from 250 on the previous list. China has 66 systems on the list (down from 72), and Japan has 30 (down from 32). The UK has 29 systems on the list, France has 23, and Germany has 19. The remaining 81 systems are scattered in countries throughout Europe and Asia.

Of interest