Interestingly MDGrape-3 is made of specialized CPUs, which are carefully handcrafted and designed especially for this purpose. Because of this MDGrape-3 takes the 1-Peta-FLOPS hurdle with just 4080 CPUs – and the whole system costs just a cheapo 9-millionen USD!
For comparision: The current No. 1 on the list of supercomputers is the BlueGene/L by IBM with 131072 CPUs, crunching for the Lawrence Livermore Lab in the US.
For a comparision i compiled some quick facts about MDGrape-3, BlueGene/L and the Earth Simulator:
|Vendor||IBM||NEC||Hitachi, Intel, SGI Japan (NEC)|
|Location||Livermore (CA), USA||Yokohama, Japan||Yokohama, Japan|
|Costs||250-300 Mio. USD (?)||62.4 Mio. USD||9 Mio. USD|
|Costs/GFlop||140 USD||8000 USD||15 USD|
|Power consumption||1.5 MW||18 MW||76 kW|
|Heat dissipation||1.6 MW||18 MW (?)||76 kW (?)|
|Footprint||232 square meter||3250 square meter||?|
Yeah baby… boot up those FLOPS!
Update: Yeah, it’s FLOPS, not FLOP. I’d also like to point out that some people dount the 9-mio.-USD price-tag, considering that most of the workforce was provided by IBM and Hitachi, and NEC paid for most of the hardware. Got no more information, will keep updating on this.