JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia (Reuters) - A new science and technology university in Saudi Arabia will house one of the world's largest supercomputers and it is helping lure top researchers to the conservative desert state.
The King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) is due to open next year on the Red Sea coast near Jeddah, the most liberal city in a country where religious conservatives have extensive control over society.
"The supercomputer is the cornerstone of this knowledge-based economy that we are seeking," said Majid Al-Ghaslan, in charge of the acquisition, design and development of the "Shaheen" supercomputer.
Named after the peregrine falcon, which reaches speeds of up to 340 kilometers per hour, Shaheen is expected to reach 222 teraflops, a measure equaling a trillion floating point operations per second, Ghaslan said. This will make it sixth most powerful computer in the world.