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High Performance Computing in the U.S. in 1995 -

An Analysis on the Basis of the TOP500 List

Jack J. Dongarra
Computer Science Department
University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN 37996-1301
Mathematical Science Section
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Oak Ridge, TN 37831-6367
Horst D. Simon
Advanced Systems Division
Silicon Graphics Computer Systems
Mail Stop 580
Mountain View, CA 94043-1389


In 1993 for the first time a list of the top 500 supercomputer sites worldwide has been made available. The TOP500 list allows a much more detailed and well founded analysis of the state of high performance computing. Previously data such as the number and geographical distribution of supercomputer installations were difficult to obtain, and only a few analysts undertook the effort to track the press releases by dozens of vendors. With the TOP500 report now generally and easily available it is possible to present an analysis of the state of High Performance Computing (HPC) in the U.S. This note summarizes some of the most important observations about HPC in the U.S. as of late 1995, in particular the continued dominance of the world market in HPC by the U.S, the market penetration by commodity microprocessor based systems, and the growing industrial use of supercomputers.
Tue May 28 14:38:25 PST 1996