Latvia has announced its intention to become a founding member of the European High Performance Computing (EuroHPC) Joint Undertaking, which aims to pool European and national resources to build a world-class HPC infrastructure.
In the past months, HPC has gained a lot of traction at EU level. This is mainly due to the fact that none of the EU supercomputers are currently in the global top 10 and the existing ones depend on non-European technology.
On 23 March 2017, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain signed the EuroHPC Declaration. Since then, they have been joined by Belgium (June 2017), Slovenia (July 2017), Bulgaria (October 2017), Switzerland (October 2017), Greece (November 2017), Croatia (November 2017), Czech Republic (January 2018), Cyprus (February 2018), Poland (May 2018), Lithuania, Austria, Finland, Sweden (June 2018) and Latvia (July 2018). It can be assumed that more countries will join the EuroHPC Declaration in the coming months.
These countries agreed to build a world-class HPC infrastructure that would rank among the world’s top by 2022-2023. More specifically, by signing the declaration, the countries marked their intention to join the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking that will pool European resources to develop top-of-the-range exascale supercomputers for processing big data. To support this effort, €1 billion will be invested by the European Commission and Member States in building world-class supercomputers infrastructure by 2020. Private contributions will also add in to this public funding.
As a result, the European Commission published in January a proposal for a Council Regulation establishing the HPC Joint Undertaking. The proposal recognises that HPC is an essential tool in addressing health challenges and in applying personalised and precision medicine. The Commission also emphasised in the accompanying Q&A document that “HPC is the cornerstone in developing new drugs”. It can accelerate the testing of drug candidate molecules and help repositioning existing drugs for new diseases.
On 3 July, the European Parliament voted in favour of the Commission’s proposal to establish the Joint Undertaking. The proposal will be formally adopted by the Council in September.
More information on the EuroHPC Declaration and Joint Undertaking can be found here.