China's chips to power blade servers this year

China will use the servers based on its Godson chips to build a petaflop computer

Blade servers based on microprocessors designed in China will power a supercomputer prototype to be revealed by a government-backed Chinese firm in September, the company said Tuesday.

The blade servers, the first running on China's Godson chips, will later power the country's first petaflop-class supercomputer slated for completion late next year, said a spokesman for the firm, Dawning.

A petaflop computer is capable of performing one million billion "flops," or floating point operations per second.

The computer unveiled this year will be suited for use in scientific research and arms development, the spokesman said. Dawning will design Godson servers for other markets if it sees demand for them, he said.

But demand may be low. China has funded work on the Godson line of chips since 2001 to create a low-cost alternative to CPUs controlled by foreign firms. Godson chips power products from firewall appliances to off-brand laptops running Linux, but sales have never taken off. The chips have a MIPS core that is incompatible with the x86 processors from Intel and Advanced Micro Devices that are used in most PCs.

Microsoft's Windows operating system and Office productivity suite run on x86 processors, not MIPS ones.

Godson's creators still hope the chips will gain a commercial presence in coming years. The chips are also known by the name Loongson.

The chip powering China's petaflop computer will be the Godson 3b, an eight-core chip produced using a 65-nanometer process. The first version will have a clock speed of 1GHz, while later versions will have clock speeds above 1.5 GHz, according to Hu Weiwu, head engineer for the Godson project.

A Dawning computer capable of operating at one petaflop would rank among the fastest in the world, although building it with the Godson could be a challenge.

Dawning produced a supercomputer that ranked tenth in last November's Top500 list of the world's fastest machines.

That computer, based on Barcelona chips from AMD, will be installed at the Shanghai Supercomputing Center by next month, after a delay from its original delivery date last year.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags supercomputersChinaprocessorsblade serversDawning

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Owen Fletcher

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?