The NEC Corp in Japan has announced the launch of what it says is the world's most powerful supercomputer available to buy, designed for advanced use in the science fields.

NEC, Fujitsu and Hitachi in Japan and IBM, Intel and Cray in the United States all build the most powerful supercomputers, the processing power of which is measured in terms of gigaflops and teraflops.

NEC has stated that the SX-9 supercomputer, is capable of calculating 839 teraflops. Each teraflop is a trillion calculations per second.

The IBM BlueGene at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California is currently number one in the latest list of the world's 500 fastest supercomputers coming in at 280.6 teraflops.

"The SX-9 has been developed to meet the need for ultra-fast simulations of advanced and complex large-capacity scientific computing", said Yoshikazu Maruyama, senior vice president of NEC Corp.