On 5 March 2024, a key event on the future of European supercomputers and artificial intelligence was hosted by the LUMI consortium in Brussels. The need to unify and connect ecosystems in data, high-performance computing, quantum technologies, and artificial intelligence was discussed. The systematic development of skills and competencies in these areas was also a topic. Prominent speakers, including Andrus Ansip, a member of the European Parliament, and Margrethe Vestager, a European Commissioner, brought interesting perspectives on the current situation and the future of the European supercomputing and AI ecosystem. Moreover, the energy efficiency of supercomputers and the development of quantum technologies within Europe were also discussed. Branislav Jansík, Supercomputing Services Director at IT4Innovations, also featured at the event.

Andrus Ansip, a Member of the European Parliament, stressed the importance of the pan-European EuroHPC Joint Undertaking (EuroHPC JU) in the global supercomputing race and for the development of artificial intelligence: “Development of Large Language Models and generative AI require world-class supercomputing. With EuroHPC JU, we can put Europe on the AI map.”

Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission for a Europe Fit for the Digital Age and European Commissioner for Competition, added: “EuroHPC JU demonstrates that Europe can do more than just regulate. Achievements like digital twins help create more much-needed excitement around HPC.” Vestager also highlighted Europe's efforts to reduce the energy consumption of supercomputers: “Energy consumption of supercomputing must come down. It is good that LUMI shows the way by being one of the greenest supercomputers in the world.” Not only the LUMI supercomputer but also the Czech Karolina at IT4Innovations is one of the most energy-efficient supercomputers in the world (Green500 list). Both systems were acquired with the support of the EuroHPC JU.

Kimmo Koski, Managing Director of the Finnish CSC - IT Center for Science, also commented on the world-class European supercomputing ecosystem created with the support of the EuroHPC JU: "By pooling our resources, the LUMI consortium and EuroHPC JU managed to acquire one of the fastest and greenest supercomputers in the world - a powerful example of European cooperation."

Europe is pulling together a "super-rope" which will be made even stronger by quantum technologies in the near future. The EuroHPC JU is also building a network of quantum computers. In October 2022, it announced the selection of six sites across the European Union to host Europe's first quantum systems. These systems will be integrated into EuroHPC supercomputers, and their host countries will be the Czech Republic, Germany, Spain, France, Italy, and Poland. The tenders for their suppliers are currently underway.

Branislav Jansík, Supercomputing Services Director at IT4Innovations, spoke in a panel discussion at the event on the impact of supercomputing ecosystems and artificial intelligence, where he said: "Quantum computers are - not now nor in the foreseeable future - stand-alone technologies but require cooperation with classical supercomputers.”


Strengthening European competences through supercomputing and AI ecosystems