Bitcoin network speed 8 times faster than top 500 supercomputers combined

May 13, 2013

The mining speed of the bitcoin network on passed 1 exaFLOPS (1,000 petaFLOPS) this week — more than 8* times the combined speed of the Top 500 supercomputers, according to The Genesis Block.

(FLOPS stands for FLoating-point Operations Per Second, and is frequently used as a standard to measure computer speed.)

However, that calculation was based on 2011 supercomputer data and it’s not stated whether Rmax or Rpeak was used. (See the current Top500 spreadsheet for accurate data.)

The FLOPS estimate is based on the opportunity cost of computers using their hardware for mining instead of other applications. Miners are using their graphics cards to perform hashes instead of other FLOPS-based distributed computing. Therefore, a conversion rate of 1 hash = 12.7K FLOP is used to estimate what this hardware could be doing.

UPDATE 5/26/2015: Calculation questioned.