Supercomputing in India

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Picture of PARAM Yuva.

India's supercomputer program was started in late 1980s because Cray supercomputers were denied for import due to an arms embargo imposed on India, as it was a dual use technology and could be used for developing nuclear weapons.[1][2]

PARAM 8000 is considered India's first supercomputer. It was indigenously built in 1990 by Centre for Development of Advanced Computing and was replicated and installed at ICAD Moscow in 1991 under Russian collaboration.[3][4]

INDIA's Rank in Top500[edit]

As of June 2014, India has 9 systems on the Top500 list ranking 52, 101, 119, 123, 132, 136, 281, 441 and 483.[5]

Rank Site Name Rmax
52 Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology iDataPlex DX360M4 719.2 790.7
101 Centre for Development of Advanced Computing PARAM Yuva - II 388.4 520.4
119 Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur Cluster Platform SL230s Gen8 344.3 359.6
123 CSIR Centre for Mathematical Modelling and Computer Simulation Cluster Platform 3000 BL460c Gen8 334.3 362.0
132 National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting iDataPlex DX360M4 318.4 350.1
136 IT Services Provider Cluster Platform SL250s Gen8 316.8 373.2
281 Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, ISRO SAGA - Z24XX/SL390s Cluster 188.7 394.8
441 Manufacturing Company India Cluster Platform 3000 BL460c Gen8 149.2 175.7
483 IT Services Provider (B) Cluster Platform 3000 BL460c Gen8 139.2 195.3
Comparison (November 2013)[6]
Country Total Rmax
Number of
in TOP500
System Share (%)
India 3,040,297 12 2.4
China 48,549,093 63 12.6
France 9,489,912 22 4.4
Germany 13,696,834 20 4
Japan 22,472,218 28 5.6
Russia 1,846,613 5 1
Poland 455,909 2 0.4
South Korea 1,258,060 5 1
UK 9,058,329 23 4.6
USA 118,261,596 264 52.8
Canada 2,077,842 10 2
Italy 2,665,609 5 1
Australia 2,180,151 5 1



Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, Pune, has a machine with a theoretical peak of 790.7 teraflop/s, called Prithvi, which is used for climate research and operational forecasting. It is ranked 36th among the world's top 500 supercomputers June 2013 list.[7]

PARAM Yuva II[edit]

Unveiled on 8 February 2013, this supercomputer was made by Centre for Development of Advanced Computing in a period of three months, at a cost of INR160 million (US$3 million). It performs at a peak of 524 teraflop/s, about 10 times faster than the present facility, and will consume 35% less energy as compared to the existing facility. According to CDAC, the supercomputer can deliver sustained performance of 360.8 teraflop/s on the community standard Linpack benchmark, and would have been ranked 62 in the November 2012 ranking list of Top500. In terms of power efficiency, it would have been ranked 33rd in the November 2012 List of Top Green 500 supercomputers of the world.[8][9] It is the first Indian supercomputer achieving more than 500 teraflops.[10][11]

Param Yuva II will be used for research in space, bioinformatics, weather forecasting, seismic data analysis, aeronautical engineering, scientific data processing and pharmaceutical development. Educational institutes like the Indian Institutes of Technology and National Institutes of Technology can be linked to the computer through the national knowledge network. This computer is a stepping stone towards building the future petaflop-range supercomputers in India.[10][11][12]


SAGA-220 built by ISRO, is capable of performing at 220,000 gigaflop/s (220 teraflop/s). It uses about 400 NVIDIA Tesla 2070 GPUs and 400 Intel Quad Core Xeon CPUs.[13]


EKA is a supercomputer built by the Computational Research Laboratories with technical assistance and hardware provided by Hewlett-Packard.This is developed by Tata sons. It is capable of performing at 132800 gigaflop/s or 132 teraflop/s.


Indian Institute of Technology, Madras has a 91.1 teraflop/s machine called Virgo. It is ranked as 364 in the Top 500 November-2012 list. It has 292 computer nodes, 2 master nodes, 4 storage nodes and has total computing power 97 TFlops. According to Linpack Performance, Virgo is the fastest cluster in an academic institution in India. In terms of performance, it has an Expand (Rmax) of 91.126 TF and Expand (RPeak) of 97.843 TF. The computing efficiency is 932 Expand (MFlop/Watt). As of 2012, Virgo is at 224th position in the world (Top500), 5th ranked energy efficient machine in the world and 1st ranked energy efficient machine in India.

PARAM Yuva[edit]

PARAM Yuva belongs to the PARAM series of supercomputer developed by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing. It is capable of performing at about 54000 gigaflop/s or 54 teraflop/s.

Future supercomputers[edit]

The Indian Government has proposed to commit 2.5 billion USD to supercomputing research during the 12th five-year plan period (2012-2017). The project will be handled by Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore.[14][15] Additionally, it was later revealed that India plans to develop a supercomputer with processing power in the exaflop range.[16] It will be developed by C-DAC within the subsequent 5 years of approval.[17]

According to the approved plan of the Indian government, a supercomputer grid will be set up across India’s top educational and research institutions, consisting of more than 70 supercomputers. Of the 70 planned machines, around 20 will be in the range of 10 petaflops, several others will be in the 100-500 teraflops range while the rest will be smaller.[18]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "India orders review of US supercomputer deal". Indian Express. Press Trust of India. 25 March 2000. "India started supercomputer development in the early eighties after it was denied the technology by the US." 
  2. ^ Beary, Habib (1 April 2003). "India unveils huge supercomputer". BBC News. "India began developing supercomputers in the late 1980s after being refused one by the US." 
  3. ^ "C-DAC furthering ties with ICAD, Moscow: From PARAM 8000 to PARAM 10000". Center for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC). Retrieved 15 September 2011. 
  4. ^ "Supercomputer being developed at Pune, Bangalore will be ready in 6 months". Center for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC). Retrieved 15 September 2011. " India her first indigenous supercomputer in 1991 (PARAM 8000)" 
  5. ^ "Top500 List -June 2014". Retrieved 3 February 2014. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Top Supercomputers in India (Dec 2012)". Indian Institute of Science (IISC). Retrieved 11 February 2013. 
  8. ^ "C-DAC launches India's fastest supercomputer; becomes first R&D institution in India to cross 500 teraflops milestone". Information Week. 9 February 2013. Retrieved 9 February 2013. 
  9. ^ "C-DAC reaffirms India's position on supercomputing map with PARAM Yuva - II". CDAC. Retrieved 9 February 2013. 
  10. ^ a b "C-DAC unveils India’s fastest supercomputer". The Times of India. Retrieved 9 February 2013. 
  11. ^ a b "India's fastest supercomputer 'Param Yuva II' unveiled". DNA India. 8 February 2013. Retrieved 9 February 2013. 
  12. ^ "C-DAC unveils India's fastest supercomputer Param Yuva II". The Economic Times. 9 February 2013. Retrieved 9 February 2013. 
  13. ^ "ISRO builds India's fastest supercomputer". The Economics Times. 2 May 2011. 
  14. ^ "Making up lost ground: India pitches for $1bn leap in supercomputers". Daily Mail. 23 January 2012. Retrieved 29 January 2012. 
  15. ^ "India Aims to Double R&D Spending for Science". HPC Wire. 4 January 2012. Retrieved 29 January 2012. 
  16. ^ C-DAC and Supercomputers in India
  17. ^ "India plans 61 times faster supercomputer by 2017". Times of India. 27 September 2012. Retrieved 9 October 2012. 
  18. ^ "Grid of supercomputers to be set up in top institutions". Live Mint. Retrieved 4 February 2014.