Europe's Most Powerful Supercomputer Comes Online
May 4, 2005 -- Europe's most powerful supercomputer, known as MareNostrum, started for the first time at a research center in Barcelona on April 28. Built by IBM, the machine can perform 40 trillion calculations per second. The MareNostrum has the equivalent memory of 20,000 personal computers and its storage capacity of 233 terabytes is equal to over 4 years' worth of nonrepeating songs if on an iPod.
MareNostrum is owned by the Barcelona Supercomputing Center, a consortium of the Spanish and Catalan governments and the Polytechnical University of Catalonia. It will be used for research in computer architecture, aerodynamics, biology, and genetics.
Housed in a chapel on the university campus, the machine is currently ranked as the fourth most powerful supercomputer in the world.
Getting Up to Speed: The Future of Supercomputing, a recent report from the National Research Council, identifies U.S. needs for supercomputing to strenthen defenses and national security which cannot be satisfied with current policies and levels of spending. The federal government should provide stable, long-term funding and support multiple supercomputing hardware and software vendors in order to give scientists and policymakers better tools to solve problems in areas such as intelligence, nuclear stockpile stewardship, and climate change.