Cambridge-1: UK's most powerful supercomputer is designed by NVIDIA

Written by Guillaume
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Originally a video game specialist, NVIDIA has become one of the most involved companies in the field of artificial intelligence and mass computing over the years.

In October 2020, NVIDIA announced that it was building a new supercomputer in the UK. At the time, it explained that the powerful machine was being built in collaboration with several players - AstraZeneca, GSK, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, King's College London and Oxford Nanopore - to help them with their research. Jen-Hsun Huang, NVIDIA's CEO, explained that the goal is to " deepen our understanding of dementia, cancer and other serious diseases " and " accelerate drug discovery and genomic sequencing.

This is a very ambitious program, which required an exceptional supercomputer. Named Cambridge-1, the supercomputer in question is now complete, and NVIDIA just officially presented it last week. Initially planned for a financing of around 51.7 million dollars (about 43.5 million euros), the beast finally cost significantly more: NVIDIA now mentions an investment of 100 million dollars (about 84 million euros) and, based on a report by Frontier Economics, the American company specifies that Cambridge-1 " has the potential to create an estimated value of 825 million dollars (about 695 million euros) over the next ten years ".

Cambridge-1 is currently the most powerful supercomputer in the United Kingdom and ranks 41st in the Top500 list of the world's 500 most powerful supercomputers. To reach this level, NVIDIA explains that Cambridge-1 has 80 of its own DGX A100 systems. In total, the machine is thus capable of deploying an impressive computing power that NVIDIA presents as follows: 400 petaflops of AI performance and 8 petaflops of LINPACK performance. Finally, to further emphasize the eminently beneficial side of its supercomputer, NVIDIA emphasizes that it is " powered 100% by renewable energy ".