Europe’s Exascale Supercomputer in Its Starting Blocks

4 October 2023

EuroHPC JU and the German-French supercomputer consortium ParTec-Eviden, led by Eviden, have signed a contract for the construction of JUPITER. JUPITER will be the first exascale supercomputer in Europe and hosted at Forschungszentrum Jülich in the German state of North Rhine Westphalia. The system, designed for largest possible simulations and AI applications in science and industry alike, is expected to launch in 2024. Owned by the European High Performance Computing Joint Undertaking (EuroHPC JU), it will be operated by the Jülich Supercomputing Centre (JSC), one of the three national supercomputing centers of the Gauss Centre for Supercomputing (GCS).

Following last year’s selection of Forschungszentrum Jülich as the hosting entity, it has now also been decided who will supply JUPITER, Europe’s first exascale supercomputer: a bidding consortium by the German supercomputing and quantum computing company ParTec AG and Eviden, the advanced computing division of the French IT service provider Atos.

The “Joint Undertaking Pioneer for Innovative and Transformative Exascale Research,” or JUPITER for short, will be the first system in Europe capable of more than 1 exaflop/s. This number corresponds to one million times one million times one million – a “1” followed by 18 zeros – floating-point operations per second, which is the equivalent of the computing power of 10 million modern notebooks.

JUPITER is designed to tackle the most demanding simulations and compute-intensive AI applications in science and industry. Applications will include training large neural networks like language models in AI, simulations for developing functional materials, creating digital twins of the human heart or brain for medical purposes, validating quantum computers, and high-resolution simulations of our climate that encompass the entire Earth system.

The cost of the system and its operation for an expected six years amounts to 500 million euros. Half of JUPITER’s funding is provided by the European Union, and the other two quarters by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Ministry of Culture and Science of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (MKW-NRW), respectively.

Modular architecture for largest-scale simulations and AI workloads

JUPITER will be implementing the modular supercomputing architecture. The exascale-computer will consist of a highly scalable Booster Module and a tightly coupled general-purpose Cluster Module. The general-purpose cluster module will be based on SiPearl’s new Rhea processor made in Europe, a CPU with exceptionally high memory bandwidth for most complex workloads. The Booster Module will feature NVIDIA’s accelerated computing platform designed for next-generation data center technologies to deliver extreme-scale computing power for AI and simulation workloads, for example, to train generative AI like large language models. The components will be integrated by Eviden into their highly energy-efficient, direct liquid-cooled BullSequana XH3000 platform, and the cluster and booster modules are dynamically operated as a unified supercomputer using ParTec's modular ParaStation Modulo operating system.

ParTec, Eviden, SiPearl and NVIDIA are collaborating with the European scientific community on JUPITER to provide researchers with the state-of-the-art AI and HPC resources they need to drive the next wave of breakthroughs in areas from climate to quantum computing. The first exascale supercomputer in Europe will pioneer new avenues of research and scientific discovery not only in Europe, but all over the world.

The installation of the system will start in early 2024. Beginning with the construction of JUPITER, users will be able to prepare for and test the system as part of the JUPITER Early Access Program, enabling a close cooperation of all involved parties to fabricate and configure the best possible version of the system for the scientific community.

More details and specifics about the system will be announced in November at this year's SC23 conference.


Europe’s Exascale Supercomputer in Its Starting Blocks
This news marks a pivotal step forward in the realisation of our endeavour to bring exascale computing to Europe. With the combined expertise of our partners and the EuroHPC JU’s continued commitment to bolstering European computing power, JUPITER will revolutionise the European HPC landscape and reinforce European excellence in HPC. Not only will JUPITER break the exaflop barrier, but the system will also use the European HPC processor Rhea developed under the European Processor Initiative by SiPearl.

Anders Dam Jensen, Executive Director of EuroHPC JU
Europe’s Exascale Supercomputer in Its Starting Blocks
The signing of the contract for the construction of JUPITER is another major milestone on the way of Europe entering the exascale era. JUPITER will be one of the leading supercomputers in the world and will therefore become a symbol of the strength of European scientific cooperation. It will enable scientists to achieve scientific breakthroughs in various domains like health, climate, energy, materials and AI. We are proud to host this research infrastructure in Germany.

Prof. Dr. Sabine Döring, State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)
Europe’s Exascale Supercomputer in Its Starting Blocks
The JUPITER exascale computer is a milestone for NRW as a research location. The fact that the first European supercomputer of this new performance class is being installed in NRW underlines our leading position in high performance computing. With its incredible computing power, JUPITER will help address the major societal challenges of our time. It will be particularly well suited for AI applications and further enhance Jülich´s focus on quantum computing in combination with the Jülich supercomputing architecture.

Minister Ina Brandes, Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia (MKW NRW)
Europe’s Exascale Supercomputer in Its Starting Blocks
With JUPITER, our Supercomputing Centre at Forschungszentrum Jülich will offer an instrument of unprecedented size and capabilities, the result of years of outstanding systems- and user-oriented research. In its dual role as a leading simulation and AI-engine, as required for training large foundation models, JUPITER promises breakthroughs in many areas where pressing challenges are at stake, such as materials science, sustainable energy systems, or earth system science.

Prof. Astrid Lambrecht, Chair of the Board of Directors of Forschungszentrum Jülich
Europe’s Exascale Supercomputer in Its Starting Blocks
I am particularly proud that our specialists at Jülich, together with many European partners, succeeded in developing the new modular supercomputing concept as a genuine European technology, which is now the basis of JUPITER. Only thanks to the generous support of the European Commission since 2012 as well as EuroHPC JU and BMBF in the DEEP and SEA projects, such a development was possible in the first place.

Prof. Thomas Lippert, Director of the JSC, Forschungszentrum Jülich

Computing time via established peer review procedures

The Jülich Supercomputing Centre will operate JUPITER as a member of the Gauss Centre for Supercomputing (GCS), an association of the three national high-performance computing centers in Germany, to which the three data centers of Forschungszentrum Jülich (JSC), the Bavarian Academy of Sciences (LRZ), and Stuttgart University (HLRS) belong. The computing time is allocated to national and European projects via established peer review procedures. GCS is supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the Ministry of Culture and Science of North Rhine-Westphalia, the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts of the German State of Baden-Württemberg, and the Bavarian State Ministry of Science and the Arts.


Prof. Dr. Dr. Thomas Lippert

Head of Jülich Supercomputing Centre Director at the Institute for Advanced Simulation

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    Last Modified: 18.01.2024