ENI, BP, Total and the November TOP500

ENI enters Top500 list. Total and BP vie for Petaflop power. Microsoft slips further down.

There were three new oil and gas entries into the Top500.org list of the world’s fastest computers this month, from Italy’s ENI, and two unnamed oil companies—one in the US and one in China. ENI’s HPCC1 machine (N° 69) is an IBM IDataPlex with a 0.5 petaflop peak rating. The US machine is an HP/Intel cluster with a 1.1PF rating. Both are some way behind the oil and gas list leader which remains Total’s Pangea (OITJ June 2013) with its 2.2PF bandwidth.

Of course not all machines are actually in the Top500, notably BP’s new 2.2PF Houston Cluster, part of what the EnterpriseTech portal described as a five-year, $100 million cluster investment program. BP’s new machine is based on ‘vanity-free’ HP ProLiant SL230s Gen8 nodes each with 128 GB of memory.

Just in case you get carried away by all the oil and gas supercomputing prowess it is worth remembering that the top slot in the list is held by China’s Tianhe-2 with a 34PF rating. Number 2 is the Department of Energy’s Cray XK7 system at 18PF.

It behoves us to record Microsoft’s long term slide down the Top500 list. The Shanghai Supercomputer Center Dawning/Magic Cube (0.15PF), in at N° 11 in list 32 is now at 237 while China’s Faenov machine, in at 165 on list 40 is now at 309. Lots more Top500 lists.

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