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Moscow State University buying a 10-petaflop supercomputer

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Moscow State University has contracted T-Platforms to build a 10-petaflop supercomputer that should nearly match the performance of the current fastest computer in the world.

Moscow State University Lomonosov supercomputer
Moscow State University Lomonosov supercomputer

Russia's Moscow State University has a hunger for supercomputers. In the last four years it's contracted with high-performance computing (HPC) company T-Platforms to build two clusters: a 60-teraflop machine called Chebyshev completed in 2008, and the much-faster 1.3-petaflop "Lomonosov" (pictured) that just received an upgrade earlier this year. Finding itself still short on flops, MSU has contracted with T-Platforms yet again to build a 10-petaflop cluster scheduled to be operational in 2013. That's a lot of number-crunching power. Currently, the fastest supercomputer in the world is Japan's K Computer at 10.51 petaflops, but the Department of Energy has contracted with Cray and Nvidia to built one pushing 20 petaflops by the end of 2012.

According to The Register, T-Platforms is planning a mixture of different node types to achieve double-digit petaflop performance. The company will reportedly build the nodes from Sandy Bridge or Ivy Bridge Xeon processors and Nvdia's next-generation Kepler GPU coprocessors. Intel's Many Integrated Core (MIC) architecture could also be included if it's available at design time in 2012. All that silicon will go into a custom water-cooled high-density rack-and-blade setup that makes our "killer gaming PC" look like a pocket calculator.