There’s a race to build the first supercomputer to cross the “exascale” performance threshold, and the United States on Monday detailed its contender, a $500 million Intel-powered system called Aurora. The sprawling system, to be built at the Energy Department’s Argonne National Laboratory near Chicago, and when it’s ready in 2021 will perform a quintillion calculations per second, a level called 1 exaflops. That’s five times faster than the current record holder, the IBM-built Summit supercomputer at the DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and eight times faster than the No. 2 machine, a close cousin called Sierra at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Read more about it here.