Next: The TOP25 Supercomputer Up: High Performance Computing Previous: France


In the Benelux, Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg, six of the installed machines have entered the TOP500. Among them is the second most powerful European vector computer in the list: the NEC SX-3 machine of the NLR. The number of machines is to small to draw any statistical conclusions from. Nevertheless, machines in three classes are available:

  1. The oldies: [o]IBM VF vector mainframes from the IBM vector computer type. These machines where placed as part of the EASINET initiative: a network of the then most powerful IBM vector mainframes in Europe. Probably, we will not see them back in the next TOP500. The machine in Amsterdam will be downsized, so certainly will fall of the list.

  2. The work horses: [o]Vector MPs two vector multiprocessors, the NEC SX-3 and the Dutch national supercomputer, a Cray YMP figure high in the list. In The Netherlands, these two machines are the two computers on which the real high-performance computing is performed.

  3. The parallel machines of different brands: [o]MPPs There is not a real big parallel machine yet. The parallel machines are used to explore parallelization and to acquire experience.

All machines, but one, are in The Netherlands. In fact, most machines are located in one building in Amsterdam: in the Scientific Center Watergraafsmeer, SARA houses three supercomputers (Cray YMP, IBM 9000, and Parsytec) and the neighbouring CWI has a Cray SMP.

Belgium is clearly lagging behind in large machines. One reason is that preferably machines have to be mirrored in the French and Dutch speaking parts of the country. If you divide a supercomputer in two, the parts may not be big enough to enter the TOP500 list!

[1]By the way, the 32-processor machine in Groningen only has 16 processors so should be much lower on the list. TMC smallest model is a 32-node machine, but if you have money for only sixteen, they leave out the other sixteen.


Next: The TOP25 Supercomputer Up: High Performance Computing Previous: France
Fri Jun 3 12:02:18 MDT 1994