Ireland is to get a new €5.4m national supercomputer as part of the National High Performance Computing Service.
The powerful number cruncher will be used to help researchers and organisations to process huge and complex data sets as well as run complicated software as part of their research.
Among the areas of study that will be tackled using the device will be climate change, earth observation, medicine, agriculture, engineering and more.
The new supercomputer will be installed in Waterford in August and launched in September.
It is funded by Science Foundation Ireland’s Infrastructure Programme through the Irish Centre for High End Computing and will be managed and operated from NUI Galway.
The new machine will replace ‘Fionn’, the current largest State-owned supercomputer, which is based in Waterford.
Access to the computers is granted to researchers who have succeeded during a peer review process carried out by scientists.
The new device will take up the same amount of space as Fionn, but it will be five times more powerful because of improvements in the technology since its predecessor was installed in 2013.
“It will significantly advance the data intensive computing and storage capabilities of Irish research activities in life-sciences, bioinformatics, material science, ICT, and engineering and further highlights Ireland as an attractive location for world-leading scientists and engineers,” Director-General of Science Foundation Ireland Professor Mark Ferguson said.
The Intel machine will have 336 high performance servers, more than 13,440 Central Processing Units and 64 terabytes of memory.
“This upgraded national resource is essential to ensuring Ireland can compete internationally in key domains such as precision medicine, earth observation and artificial intelligence,” said ICHEC Director, Professor JC Desplat.
“It represents a crucial investment at a time where investments in high performance computing continue their strong growth globally.”
The computer will be named after one of six pioneering Irish scientists, with the name to be chosen through a public vote.
There are many other more powerful supercomputers in Ireland, but because they are owned by private companies they are not generally available for use by researchers or public organisations.
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