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China dominates top supercomputers list

From BBC - November 13, 2017

China has overtaken the US to have the most supercomputers in the list of the world's fastest 500 systems.

The communist nation accounted for 202 of the globe's highest performance machines, according to the latest Top500 survey.

By contrast, the US had 143. That marks its lowest level since the bi-annual study began, 25 years ago, but still secured it second place.

Japan placed third with 35 systems, and Germany fourth with 20.

In the previous survey, published in June, the US still had a lead of 169 supercomputers to China's 160.

The reversal of fortunes reflects China's increased investment in research and development - according to a recent study, the country now accounts for about 20% of the world's total R&D expenditure.

Scientific studies

Supercomputers are typically large, expensive systems featuring tens of thousands of processors designed to carry out specialised calculation-intensive tasks.

Examples include:

Performance is measured in petaflops (one thousand trillion floating point operations per second).

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