Nvidia collaborates on fastest AI supercomputer in academia

July 24, 2020 //By Nick Flaherty
Nvidia collaborates on fastest AI supercomputer in academia
The University of Florida is to build the most powerful AI supercomputer in a US university using Nvidia technology and funding

The University of Florida (UF) and Nvidia plan to build the world’s fastest AI supercomputer in academia, delivering 700 petaflops of AI performance. The leading supercomputers tend to be in government research labs and are reaching over 1000 petaflop of performance, depending on the resolution of the AI framework.

The effort is anchored by a $50 million gift: $25 million from Nvidia co-founder Chris Malachowsky and graduates of the university and $25 million in hardware, software, training and services from Nvidia. “We’ve created a replicable, powerful model of public-private cooperation for everyone’s benefit,” said Malachowsky.

UF will invest an additional $20 million to create an AI-centric supercomputing and data centre that will also be bed by Nvidia. The $70 million public-private partnership promises to make UF one of the leading AI universities in the US.

This follows Microsoft's plans to build a cloud-based AI supercomputer for Open AI with 10,000 GPU cores:  MICROSOFT’S MISSING AI METRIC: POWER

UF will add the NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD architecture to its existing supercomputer, HiPerGator, and plans to be up and running by early 2021. This will integrate 140 of the latest DGX A100 systems powered by a combined 1,120 A100 Tensor Core GPUs. It will include 4 petabytes of high-performance storage. An Nvidia Mellanox HDR 200Gb/s InfiniBand network will provide the high throughput and extremely low-latency network connectivity.

This gives the university the tools to apply AI across a multitude of areas to address major challenges such as rising seas, aging populations, data security, personalized medicine, urban transportation and food insecurity. UF expects to create 30,000 AI-enabled graduates by 2030. “Our vision is to become the nation’s first AI university,” said University of Florida President Kent Fuchs.

“The partnership here with the UF, the state of Florida, and NVIDIA, anchored by Chris’ generous donation, goes beyond just money,” said Jensen Huang, CEO of Nvidia who founded NVIDIA in 1993 along with Malachowsky and Curtis Priem. “We are excited

Nvidia's A100 PoD architecture for the UF supercomputer

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