STA, 27 November 2019 - The first stage of Slovenia's fastest public supercomputer was officially launched as part of the EuroHPC network of supercomputers at the University of Maribor on Wednesday.
The HPC RIVR is a prototype that will be used to develop and test solutions for the primary supercomputer system at the Institute of Information Sciences (IZUM), which is expected to be launched at the end of 2020.
The supercomputer in Maribor is one of EU's eight high-performance computing (HPC) centres, the others being located in Bulgaria's Sofia, Czech Republic's Ostrava, Finland's Kajaani, Italy's Bologna, Luxembourg's Bissen, Portugal's Minho and Spain's Barcelona.
The centres will provide support to the research community and industry in developing know-how and knowledge applications in medicine, advanced materials and climate change combat.
The prototype stage launched today, called Maister after the WWI general Rudolf Maister, has 4,256 processor cores and a capacity of 244 TeraFLOPS.
The final supercomputer, called Vega after the 18th century mathematician Jurij Vega, will have a capacity of 10 PetaFLOPS and over 100,000 processor cores with an added field of 600,000 GPU cores once it is built at the Institute of Information Science (IZUM).
If it was launched today, Vega would rank 20th among the world's most powerful supercomputers, but by the end of next year it is expected to place around 40th place, according to Miralem Hadžiselimović, vice-chancellor of the University of Maribor.
The project is coordinated by the University of Maribor, but all public institutions from the Slovenian national supercomputing network (SLING) are involved.
The entire project, valued at EUR 20 million, is mostly funded by the EU (80%), while the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport will chip in the rest.
University of Maribor chancellor Zdravko Kavčič said the project was very important for the entire country. "It puts not just universities and research institutions but the entire corporate sector in a new role where it is capable of competing in Europe and globally with own know-how," he said.