EU plans to invest 1 billion euros on supercomputers
By Wu Gang
People's Daily app


The TaihuLight. (Photo: European Commission)

Brussels (People's Daily) - The European Commission has unveiled its plans to invest jointly with member states in building a world-class European supercomputers infrastructure.

The goal of the project is for Europe to acquire two "world-class" supercomputers, capable of at least 100 million billion calculations per second, and at least two mid-range systems, capable of tens of millions of billions of calculations per second, by 2020.

"Supercomputers are the engine to power the digital economy. It is a tough race and today the EU is lagging behind: We do not have any supercomputers in the world's top 10. With the EuroHPC initiative we want to give European researchers and companies world-leading supercomputer capacity by 2020 – to develop technologies such as artificial intelligence and build the future's everyday applications in areas like health, security or engineering," said Andrus Ansip, the European Commission Vice-President for the Digital Single Market.

The project will get 486 million from the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 budget, with the remaining money coming from 13 member states.

Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel said, "Supercomputers are already at the core of major advancements and innovations in many areas directly affecting the daily lives of European citizens. A better European supercomputing infrastructure holds great potential for job creation and is a key factor for the digitization of industry and increasing the competitiveness of the European economy."

Since 2012, the Commission drives EU initiatives in this field, including: the European Cloud Initiative, as part of its Digitising European Industry strategy, and the EuroHPC declaration.

The fastest supercomputer in the world is the Sunway TaihuLight, which is located in China and has over 10 million computer cores. Of the top 10 supercomputers, the top two are in China, one is in Switzerland, which is about 12 times slower than Sunway TaihuLight.