New Delhi: India is keen to join the ambitious race to develop new generation of powerful supercomputers and is mulling allocating Rs 6,000 crore for the purpose in the 12th Plan.

This is over and above the Rs 5,000 crore allocation proposed in the 12th Plan for research and development of supercomputers, Minister of State for Science and Technology Ashwani Kumar said here on Monday.

Addressing the CSIR Foundation Day function, he said there were proposals to double the government expenditure in research and development during the 12th Plan period.

A senior official said he expected the Rs 5000 crore allocation for supercomputers to get the nod of the Planning Commission but was skeptical on funding for exa-scale computing.

The fastest supercomputer with a computing speed of 2.7 petaflops is said to be in China. A petaflop is 1,000 trillion sustained floating-point operations per second.

One exaflop is 1,000 times faster than a petaflop -- performing 1 quintillion, or 1 million trillion calculations per second.

The exa-flop capabilities do not exist anywhere in the world and scientists globally hope to realise it within a decade.

"We have challenged ourselves to make a five year plan which out competes all our earlier Five Year Plan efforts," Kumar said and urged scientists to go beyond formal R&D parameters and facilitate innovative solutions that lead to inclusive growth for the people.

(Agencies)