Europe’s about to enter the exascale computing universe

It’ll be the first European supercomputer to break the exascale barrier, a few days after the announcement of the first machine (in the world) able to do so. The installation is planned to begin in 2023, in Germany.

“Jupiter,” the acronym for “Joint Undertaking Pioneer for Innovative and Transformative Exascale Research” was the name chosen for the first European supercomputer capable of performing more than one trillion operations per second. It would take about 5 million modern laptops or Pcs to match the power of this machine.

It was announced during the inauguration of LUMI – the current fastest (pre-exascale) supercomputer in Europe and the third fastest in the world – that Jupiter will be located in Germany. The construction of its own structure at the Forschungszentrum Jülich campus will be the first step to ensure that the installation, scheduled to begin in 2023, is accomplished. The ambition is for it to become operational a year later.

As other supercomputers owned by the entity, a dynamic and modular computing architecture is planned for Jupiter – it means that there will be clustered modules that guarantee an optimized response to complex simulations. This feature also translates into the possibility of integrating future technologies, such as quantum computing. For now, it is guaranteed that Artificial Intelligence will be one of it’s major applications.

“Computing and storage modules of the exascale computer in its basic configuration (blue); optional modules (green); modules for future technologies (purple) as possible extensions”

One of the major challenges of these machines is the energy consumption necessary to guarantee their operation. so, countless efforts have been mobilized to make these machines as efficient as possible. Jupiter will be no different. Its average power consumption is expected to be around 15 megawatts, making it “greener” than Frontier, which also holds the top position on the Green500 list with its 19 megawatts.

On this path to supercomputers aligned with the need to protect and restore the environment, it is expected that Jupiter will secure a place on the podium of the most sustainables. The cooling system is planned to operate with warm water and the “waste heat” will be reused.

This latest effort to make Europe a supercomputing reference requires an investment of 500 million euros, provided in equal parts by the Euro HPC JU and the Ministry of Research and Education of the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia.