GENCI to be Site of 2nd EuroHPC Exascale HPC System

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The EuroHPC Joint Undertaking has signed a hosting agreement with the French national research organization GENCI for its next exascale supercomputer, called Alice Recoque, which will be operated by CEA, a French research agency.

The system will be the second European supercomputer to reach more than 1 billion billion calculations per second. With a total cost of ownership of more than EUR 544 million, the project will be co-funded by the EuroHPC JU, with budget stemming from the Digital Europe Programme (DEP) and by contributions from France and the Netherlands. The JU will co-fund up to 50 percent of the total cost of the supercomputer.

Alice Recoque will be based on a modular architecture designed for energy-efficiency. EuroHPC JU said the system will provide several compute, pre/post processing and service partitions federated by a high-speed interconnect, sharing access to a tiered data-centric storage architecture, and managed by a unified system administration and resource management stack.

Based on French and European HPC initiatives, it will also incorporate experimental hybrid quantum computing partitions and will be open to integrate additional new EU-based sovereign technologies, paving the path to post exascale architectures and services.

The Alice Recoque supercomputer will be hosted by the Jules Verne consortium, led by France through GENCI and CEA, with the participation of the Netherlands through SURF, a research cooperative association, GENCI, as host, will manage this new supercomputer, which will be located and operated at CEA’s supercomputing center TGCC (Très Grand Centre de calcul du CEA) in Bruyères-le-Châtel as Hosting Site.

EuroHPC JU said the system will improve development of high-precision models to mitigate the effects of climate change, foster innovation in new materials and energy sources, support the creation of digital twins of the human body for personalised medicine and underpin the training of next generation of European generative AI, multimodal and foundation models.

It will also address the challenges raised by the vast amounts of data generated by scientific instruments such as telescopes, satellites, as well as IoT devices and AI applications. Thanks to its unprecedented computing power, this system will be a cornerstone to processing, inferring and leveraging data at incredibly high speeds with maximum energy efficiency.

Alice Recoque was a French computer scientist and AI pioneer. Born in 1929 in Algeria, she graduated from the École Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielle (ESPCI) in 1954.Having specialized in computing architectures, including massively parallel computers, she later worked on the design of the first mini computers. In the 1980s, she became the Strategic Leader in AI for the Bull group and was one of the first French scientists within the AI research domain.

The system will be available to a range of European researchers from academia and industry as well as public services. Access to the new machine will be jointly managed by the EuroHPC JU and the Jules Verne consortium in proportion to their investments.

EuroHPC JU has procured nine supercomputers, located across Europe. This includes JUPITER, the first European exascale system, currently under deployment in Germany and whose first module named JEDI is ranked first place in the Green500 list of the most energy-efficient supercomputers worldwide.

The EuroHPC Joint Undertaking was created in 2018 to enable the European Union and EuroHPC participating countries to coordinate their efforts and pool their resources with the objective of making Europe a world leader in supercomputing.

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