After all the lies, innuendo and hyperbole, it turns out that Donald Trump is right about the U.S. being a loser to China on one front – supercomputers.
China beat the U.S. in 2013 by creating the Tianhe-2, the fastest supercomputer in the world. But they used Intel processing chips, so it didn’t really count as a national win. Nevertheless, President Obama took the challenge seriously, especially when it was clear that China was well on its way to creating its own processor, and he promised to exceed the speed of the T-2, though that hasn’t happened yet.
Today, Obama and the U.S. have an even greater hurdle. The Top500 List named China’s Sunway TaihuLight the number one supercomputer in the world. It’s powered by a new ShenWei processor and custom interconnect, both developed in China. It’s based at the National Supercomputing Center in Wuxi, near Shanghai, and is nearly three times the speed of the TH-2.
IEEESpectrum, an engineering site, wrote, “The new rankings further solidify China’s status as a supercomputing force to be reckoned with. In addition to this new machine, the United States has, for the first time, lost its status as the country with the most systems on the list; China now has 167 systems to the U.S.’s 165.”