The 5 fastest supercomputers

After years of trailing the Chinese and Japanese, the United States now has three of the four fastest supercomputers in the world.

No. 2 Sequoia (United States)

ibm sequoia

Housed at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California, Sequoia boasts a speed of 16.32 petaflops. It topped the June edition of the Top 500 list.

Sequoia is a National Nuclear Security Administration supercomputer, used for nuclear weapons research. The NNSA uses the IBM (IBM) computer to model weapons performance and extend the life of aging weapons systems.

Work on designing the supercomputer began more than three years ago, and the system went online in April.

  @DavidGoldmanCNN - Last updated November 12 2012 09:31 AM ET

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