Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
Science | By Hubert Green

European Union wants world's fastest supercomputer by 2023 for €1B

European Union wants world's fastest supercomputer by 2023 for €1B

The Commission hopes that the EuroHPC will result in Europe having two supercomputers that are among the top 10 in the world and capable of tens of millions of billions of calculations per second.

"To achieve the goal of HPC leadership-meaning at minimum parity in HPC capabilities with the best in the world-Europe needs to acquire at least one exascale supercomputer in the same timeframe as the U.S., Japan and China".

The European Commission, hereafter known as the Gaggle of Red-tapers, has unveiled plans for a €1 billion investment in supercomputer infrastructure.

China's Sunway TaihuLight is the world's speediest supercomputer and, at peak performance, can hit 93 petaflops.

The resulting systems will be shared by EuroHPC states, which now consist of France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Belgium, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Switzerland, Greece and Croatia. "Brexit has thrown a lot of uncertainty around the UK's participation and it is really unfortunate and causing delay and confusion", University of Bristol's Simon McIntosh-Smith told Bloomberg.

Alastair Clifton, a spokesman for the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, told the outlet the United Kingdom has been "taking an active part in development of it and are working on future plans of it", but declined to say why the country hasn't yet signed up to the initiative, saying it remains "an open question" for the future.

The EU's contribution in EuroHPC will be around Euro 486 million under the current Multiannual Financial Framework, matched by a similar amount from Member States and associated countries.

There will also be two "mid-range systems", which will be able to handle tens of millions of billions of calculations per second.

The European Commission (EC) has announced a financial framework for investing €1 billion in European supercomputers over the next two years.

At present, only 13 Member States out of 28 signed the EuroHPC declaration, which main objective is to have the EU's supercomputers in the global top 3 ranking by 2022-2023.

Such sentiments are now common with European Union bureaucrats, as reflected by comments from Digital Economy and Society Commissioner Mariya Gabriel. Digital commissioner Mariya Gabriel said in a press conference that supercomputers are needed to remain competitive.

"We want to give European researchers and companies world-leading supercomputer capacity by 2020", Ansip said in a statement.

The European Commission's proposal claims that European institutions and businesses are now at a disadvantage when it comes to protecting their sensitive data.

Brussels says it will help develop artificial intelligence and applications to improve health, security and engineering, plus help forecast hurricane routes and simulate earthquakes.

Like this: