Intel unveils energy-efficient 48-core chip
Research chip said to be 10x to 20x more powerful than chips in multicore Core family
By Sharon Gaudin
December 2, 2009 03:46 PM ET
Computerworld - Intel Corp. is honing its sights on many-core chips that are far more powerful than today's dual and quad-core processors.
As expected, Intel took a big step
in that direction today by unveiling a 48-core research chip that it says is 10 to 20 times more powerful than current the top end offering in its multi-core Core line of processors. Intel also noted that the experimental chip uses the same amount of energy as two household light bulbs.
With its eye on the data center
and the cloud, Intel built fully functional cores in the new chip as part of what it calls its "terascale" mission.
"With a chip like this, you could imagine a cloud data center of the future which will be an order of magnitude more energy efficient than what exists today, saving significant resources on space and power costs," said Justin Rattner
, Intel CTO and head of Intel Labs. "Over time, I expect these advanced concepts to find their way into mainstream devices, just as advanced automotive technology such as electronic engine control, air bags and anti-lock braking eventually found their way into all cars."
Today's unveiling of the 48-core research chip comes about two years after Intel showed off
an experimental 80-core chip. That research chip had teraflop performance capabilities but used less energy than a quad-core processor.