Intel has reached a milestone in its Tera-Scale research programme to develop massively parallel computer systems, delivering a 48-core processor designed for energy efficiency.
The so-called single-chip cloud computer includes a high-speed on-chip network for sharing information and new power management techniques.
The 48 cores will use 25W when idle, or 125W when running at maximum performance, which is equivalent to today's Intel processors.
"With a chip like this, you could imagine a cloud datacentre 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, head of Intel Labs and Intel's chief technology officer.
Researchers from Intel, HP and Yahoo's Open Cirrus collaboration have begun porting cloud applications to the 48-core chip using Hadoop, a Java software framework supporting data-intensive, distributed applications.