A billion billion calculations per second: where no computer has gone before

China has started to develop its first exascale computer capable of performing a billion billion calculations per second, as the country steps up efforts to stay in the lead of the global supercomputer race. The high-performance computer, if it can be built by 2020, will boost the country’s scientific capability and possibly maintain its prestige of housing the world’s fastest calculating system. The exascale supercomputer will operate at 1,000 petaflops, or quadrillion calculations per second, 10 times the speed of China’s TaihuLight, which topped a 2016 global supercomputer speed list.”