The most environmentally-friendly supercomputers more than doubled their energy efficiency in 2017, and maintaining this trend could make exascale supercomputers running on less than 20 MW of power a possibility in several years' time, according to the latest Green500 ranking.
Between June 2016 and June 2017, the average energy efficiency of the top 10 systems soared from 4.8 gigaflops/watt to 11.1 gigaflops/watt, mainly due to the deployment of supercomputers outfitted with NVIDIA's Tesla P100 graphics-processing units.
Six of the top 10 supercomputers are petascale systems, and Japan's Tsubame 3.0 system is the current Green500 champion. Because these systems are based on commodity components, their technologies can be implemented across a wide range of high-performance computing applications.
The latest Green500 list also names 12 systems powered by Intel's Xeon Phi processors, the most efficient of which is about 40% as efficient as the P100-powered Tsubame 3.0.
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