Machines

IBM Summit Is The World’s Most Powerful AI Machine

ORNL

You need gargantuan computing power? IBM’s got you covered with its newest machine, the Summit.

The supercomputer was unveiled Friday at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. The giant crunches something around 200 quadrillion mathematical calculations per second. If you can’t get your head around how 200 quadrillion look like, don’t worry, neither do we. But what we can tell you is that it’s powerful and it took years to develop – with a little bit of help from Coral, a Department of Energy program worth $325 million.

The Summit divides its work between 4,608 computer nodes that are interconnected and stored in cabinets. They are cooled water pumps that deliver 4,000 gallons of liquid per minute throughout the system.

Each node has 1.6 terabytes of memory and data produced by the calculations can be saved at 2.2 terabytes per second.

It’s about the size of two tennis courts and its peak energy consumption is at 15 megawatts. For reference, that’s basically enough to power up over 7,000 homes.

IBM is not planning on stopping here though. The Summit is just a stepping stone towards a bigger, bolder project – a system that can perform a quintillion calculations per second.

At Oak Ridge, the Summit will be useful for scientific research into subjects like fusion energy, astrophysics and genetics, among many other things.

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