Derived from Scalable Processor Architecture, SPARC is a RISC (Reduced Instruction Set Computing) instruction set architecture (ISA) developed by Sun Microsystems.
Introduced in 1987, SPARC is now a registered trademark of SPARC International, Inc., which is an organization created in 1989 to promote the SPARC, manage its trademarks, and provide conformance testing.
The original 32-bit SPARC was initially designed for use in Sun’s Sun-4 workstation and server systems.This replaced their earlier Sun-3 system which was based on the Motorola 68000 family of processers.
SPARC processers were later used in SMP (Symmetric Multiprocessing) and CC –NUMA (Non-Uniform Memory Access) servers produced by Sun, Futjitsu, Solobourne, as well as others.
SPARC processors have also been designed for 64-bit operation. The SPARC architecture has been licensed to several manufacturers such as Atemel, Fujitsu, Texas Instruments, and others.
Thanks to the efforts of SPARC International at making SPARC a large ecosystem for design, SPARC architecture is now fully open and non-proprietary.
The SPARC processor design is utilized by many industry giants including Oracle Corporation which released their 3.6 Ghz 16 core SPARC T5 March 2013.