The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), has announced that Sequoia, a new supercomputing system at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), has been ranked as the world's most powerful computing system. Clocking in at 16.32 sustained petaflops (quadrillion floating point operations per second), Sequoia earned the No. 1 ranking on the industry standard Top500 list of the world's fastest supercomputers released Monday, June 18, at the International Supercomputing Conference (ISC12) in Hamburg, Germany. The computer system was built for the NNSA by IBM. You can see a list of the #1 ranked computers since 1993 here
A 96-rack IBM Blue Gene/Q system, Sequoia will enable simulations that explore phenomena at a level of detail never before possible. Sequoia is primarily water cooled and consists of 96 racks; 98,304 compute nodes; 1.6 million cores; and 1.6 petabytes of memory.
Sequoia is dedicated to NNSA's Advanced Simulation and Computing (ASC) program for stewardship of the nation's nuclear weapons stockpile, a joint effort from LLNL, Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia National Laboratories. The NNSA says the powerful computing system helps the U.S. keep its nuclear stockpile safe, without the need for underground testing of nuclear weapons.
Bob Meisner, NNSA director of the ASC program, says, "Sequoia will provide a more complete understanding of weapons performance, notably hydrodynamics and properties of materials at extreme pressures and temperatures. In particular, the system will enable suites of highly resolved uncertainty quantification calculations to support the effort to extend the life of aging weapons systems; what we call a life extension program (LEP)."
Photos: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory