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Hungry supercomputers

Hungry supercomputers

Supercomputers, impressive computers with a myriad of CPUs and almost unlimited computing power. Technical data is often only given in the form of the number of processors and computing power. What such a computing monster probably costs or how much electricity it consumes remains mostly unknown.

In the NYT (New York Times) some data about such a supercomputer became known. It is about a supercomputer called 'Q' in the USA, in Los Alamos, where several supercomputers are located. There it is in the Nicholas C. Metropolis Center for Modeling and Simulation, a three-story building with over 30,000 square meters and several cooling towers. According to this, this 'Q' should consume more electricity than 5,000 families. Thereby 3 megawatts should flow through the cables for the power supply of the CPUs and another 2 megawatts should be due for the cooling of the CPUs. The Metropolis Center is even able to provide 30 megawatts, enough to supply a small town. Compared to the latest supercomputer from Los Alamos called Green Destiny, equipped with the energy-saving Transmeta CPUs, the 'Q' is 200 times faster, but costs 640x as much (215 million US dollars, instead of 335,000 US dollars for the Green Destiny ). The new supercomputer Green Destiny doesn't even have to be housed in a special building with climate control and air filtering, like the 'Q'.