The Beijing Meteorological Bureau (BMB) purchased an IBM supercomputer to provide weather forecasts and monitor air quality. The IBM System p575 will provide ten times the computational power of the BMB's current weather forecasting system. It is capable of sweeping an area up to 44,000 square kilometers to provide hourly weather forecasts and air-quality reports. The 80-node IBM System p575 uses POWER5+ microprocessors and can deliver peak performance of 9.8 teraflops (or a trillion operations per second), ranking it among the ten fastest supercomputers in China, according to the Top 500 list of the world's fastest supercomputers. "The IBM supercomputer will allow for much more fine numerical weather forecasting for the Beijing area during the Olympics and afterwards," Liu Xulin, director of the Beijing Meteorological Information Center, said in a statement. "IBM brings many resources to help us improve forecasting, especially their world-class scientists and researchers, who combine meteorology with computer science."