Home : Bits and Bytes : Petaflops Definition

Petaflops

Petaflops is a unit of measurement used for measuring the performance of a processor's floating point unit, or FPU. It may also be written "petaFLOPS" or "PFLOPS." Since FLOPS stands for "Floating Point Operations Per Second," the term "petaflops" may be either singular (one petaflops) or plural (two or more petaflops). One petaflops is equal to 1,000 teraflops, or 1,000,000,000,000,000 FLOPS.

Petaflops are rarely used to measure a single computer's performance, since only the fastest supercomputers run at more than one petaflops. Therefore, petaflops are more often used when calculating the processing power of multiple computers. Also, since FLOPS only measures floating point calculations, petaflops is not necessarily a good indicator of a computer's overall performance. Other factors, such as the processor's clock speed, the system bus speed, and the amount of RAM may also affect how quickly a computer can perform calculations.

Updated: March 18, 2010

Cite this definition:

http://techterms.com/definition/petaflops

TechTerms - The Tech Terms Computer Dictionary

This page contains a technical definiton of Petaflops. It explains in computing terminology what Petaflops means and is one of many computing terms in the TechTerms dictionary.

All definitions on the TechTerms website are written to be technically accurate but also easy to understand. If you find this Petaflops definition to be helpful, you can reference it using the citation links above. If you think a term should be updated or added to the TechTerms dictionary, please email TechTerms!