Japan's Fugaku loses title as world's fastest supercomputer

Japanese supercomputer Fugaku has lost its position as the world's fastest in terms of computing speed, ranking second after topping the list in a twice-yearly ranking the last four times in a row, its developer Riken research institute said Monday.

Named after an alternative word for Mt. Fuji, Fugaku lost the top spot to the Frontier supercomputer of the U.S.-based Oak Ridge National Laboratory, out of a ranking of 500 supercomputers.

But Fugaku maintained its first place in a separate ranking focusing on industrial use.

"This shows that Fugaku continues to be one of the world's leading supercomputers in a field where competition and development are fierce," said Satoshi Matsuoka, director of the institute's Center for Computational Science in Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture, that hosts Fugaku.

Jointly developed by Riken and Fujitsu Ltd., the supercomputer launched partial operations in April 2020 and full-scale operations in March 2021. Fugaku was used to visualize how droplets that could carry the coronavirus spread from the mouth and to help explore possible treatments for COVID-19.

Fugaku's predecessor, the K supercomputer, was decommissioned in 2019.

© Kyodo News