Four new supercomputers backed by a pan-European initiative will use NVIDIA’s data center accelerators, networks and software to advance AI and high performance computing.

They include one system dubbed Leonardo, unveiled today at Italy’s CINECA research center, using NVIDIA technologies to deliver the world’s most powerful AI system. The four mark the first of eight systems to be announced this year targeting spots among the world’s 50 most powerful computers.

Together, they’ll form a regional network, “an engine to power Europe’s data economy,” said EuroHPC, the group driving the effort, in a white paper outlining its goals.

The systems will apply AI and data analytics across scientific and commercial applications that range from fighting COVID-19 and climate change to the design of advanced airplanes, cars, drugs and materials.

Joining Leonardo are a wave of new AI supercomputers planned for the Czech Republic, Luxembourg and Slovenia that will act as national centers of competence, expanding skills and creating jobs.

NVIDIA GPUs, InfiniBand Power Latest Systems

All four supercomputers announced use NVIDIA Ampere architecture GPUs and NVIDIA Mellanox HDR InfiniBand networks to tap an ecosystem of hundreds of HPC and AI applications. Atos, an NVIDIA systems partner headquartered in France, will build three of the four systems; Hewlett Packard Enterprise will construct the fourth.

The new systems join 333 of the world’s TOP500 supercomputers powered by NVIDIA GPUs, networking or both.

NVIDIA GPUs accelerate 1,800 HPC applications, nearly 800 of them available today in the GPU application catalog and NGC, NVIDIA’s hub for GPU-optimized software.

The new systems all use HDR 200Gb/s InfiniBand for low latency, high throughput and in-network computing. It’s the latest version of InfiniBand, already powering supercomputers across Europe.

A Brief Tour of Europe’s Latest Supercomputers

Leonardo will be the world’s fastest AI supercomputer. Atos is harnessing nearly 14,000 NVIDIA Ampere architecture GPUs and HDR 200Gb/s InfiniBand networking to deliver a system with 10 exaflops of AI performance. It will use the InfiniBand Dragonfly+ network topology to deliver both flexibility and scalable performance.

Researchers at CINECA will apply that power to advance science, simulating planetary forces behind climate change and molecular movements inside a coronavirus. The center is perhaps best known for its work on Quantum Espresso, a suite of open source codes for modeling nanoscale materials for jobs such as engineering better batteries.

A new supercomputer in Luxembourg called MeluXina, also part of the EuroHPC network, will connect 800 NVIDIA A100 GPUs on HDR 200Gb/s InfiniBand links. The system, to be built by Atos and powered by green energy from wood waste, will pack nearly 500 petaflops of AI performance.

MeluXina will address commercial applications and scientific research. It plans to offer access to users leveraging HPC and AI to advance work in financial services as well as manufacturing and healthcare.

Eastern Europe Powers Up

The new Vega supercomputer at the Institute of Information Science in Maribor, Slovenia, (IZUM) will be based on the Atos BullSequana XH2000 system. The supercomputer, named after Slovenian mathematician Jurij Vega, includes 240 A100 GPUs and 1,800 HDR 200Gb/s InfiniBand end points.

Vega will help “ensure a new generation of experts and developers, as well as the wider Slovenian community, can meet new challenges within our national consortium and contribute to regional and European HPC initiatives,” said Aleš Bošnjak, IZUM’s director in a statement issued by EuroHPC.

EuroHPC map
A total of 32 countries are participating in the EuroHPC effort.

The IT4Innovations National Supercomputing Center will host what’s expected to become the most powerful supercomputer in the Czech Republic. It will use 560 NVIDIA A100 GPUs to deliver nearly 350 petaflops of AI performance — 7x the capabilities of the center’s existing system.

The supercomputer will be based on the HPE Apollo 6500 systems from Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE). It will serve researchers at the VSB – Technical University of Ostrava, where it’s based, as well as an expanding set of external academic and industrial users employing a mix of simulations, data analytics and AI.

The story of Europe’s ambitions in HPC and AI is still being written.

EuroHPC has yet to announce its plans for systems in Bulgaria, Finland, Portugal and Spain. And beyond that work, the group has already sketched out plans that stretch to 2027.

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