Contract worth 11.5M euro signed for a new supercomputing system in Bulgaria

The European High-Performance Computing Joint Undertaking, which pools European resources to buy and deploy world-class supercomputers and technologies, announced on December 14 the signature of a contract worth 11.5 million euro for a new supercomputing system in Bulgaria.

The new system will be capable of more than 4.4 petaflops, and will be hosted by Sofiatech, the European Commission said.

Examples of applications for its use may include accurate assessment of seismic sustainability of buildings, weather forecasting, and medical applications to support low invasive diagnostics and the discovery of innovative treatments.

European Commission Executive Vice-President for a Europe Fit for the Digital Age, Margrethe Vestager, said: “With the acquisition of this supercomputer in Bulgaria, as well as others around Europe, we are staying ahead in our efforts to address industrial, technological and scientific challenges.

“Investing in supercomputing infrastructure is crucial to improve the quality of life of EU citizens, boost competitiveness, and advance research and innovation,” Vestager said.

European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, Mariya Gabriel, said: “I am very happy to see the efforts begun last year come to fruition with the acquisition of this new supercomputing system in my native Bulgaria.

“This new supercomputer will aid European research in driving innovation and fostering better science by providing access to leading edge HPC infrastructures and services – regardless where they are in Europe,” Gabriel said.

Europe is at the forefront of investment in next-generation supercomputing infrastructure, having enormous positive effects on society, the Commission statement said.

An example of this is also the EU’s Destination Earth initiative , which aims to develop a very high precision digital model of the Earth, which could improve weather forecasting, water management, and environmental modelling.

Following the announcement of the LUMI supercomputer in Finland and the  LEONARDO supercomputer in Italy in October, as well as three other supercomputers in the Czech Republic, Luxembourg, and Slovenia, the supercomputer in Bulgaria marks the latest addition to the supercomputer family by the Joint Undertaking, since September.

The Joint Undertaking plans to acquire another petascale and a pre-exascale supercomputer in Portugal and Spain. A European Commission proposal announced in September will enable a further investment of eight billion euro in the next generation of supercomputers.

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