HPE and MBZUAI to build supercomputer to tackle scientific and engineering challenges

The supercomputer will enable faculty members, researchers, and students to accelerate scientific discovery in many areas including healthcare, structural engineering, law enforcement, supply chain, and sustainability

A new supercomputer will be built at the Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence (MBZUAI) by Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE). HPE said supercomputing is vital to delivering artificial intelligence (AI) at scale and driving global innovation, industry competitiveness, and economic growth.

From accelerating vaccine discovery to fight a pandemic, advancing clean energy systems to increase sustainability, enabling new possibilities in AI, supercomputing is a core technology to solving the world’s most challenging scientific and engineering challenges, HPE noted.

MBZUAI is dedicated solely to AI and to accelerate AI-driven scientific discovery and advance the UAE’s goal to be a global AI leader. HPE said its robust supercomputing and AI technologies will significantly enhance the university’s ability to run complex AI models with extremely large data sets, and increase predictability in research analyses in fields including energy, transportation and the environment.

In January 2021, the RTA said that using AI helped it reach an operational surplus of 61% while, in March 2021, it was announced that Qatar’s Umm Al Houl desalination plant will leverage AI to optimise operations and achieve energy saving at the site, reducing carbon emissions.

Established in 2019, MBZUAI has already ranked 24th in the world for AI, computer vision, machine learning, and natural language processing. The new supercomputer will help MBZUAI support the UAE’s National Strategy for AI, bringing together the power of academia, government, and industry to strengthen the country’s global competitiveness, the statement from HPE explained.

“Supercomputing plays an essential role in unleashing AI to achieve significant breakthroughs for organisations worldwide, across public and private sectors. HPE is leading the market in this next frontier by combining supercomputing performance and capabilities with solutions that are purpose-built for AI, to build and train machine learning models at-scale. MBZUAI’s Campus Super Computing Center is demonstrating this capability to unlock new possibilities in AI and strengthen UAE’s position as an AI-driven nation to advance key initiatives in healthcare, sustainability, and engineering,” said Justin Hotard, Executive Vice President and General Manager, HPC, AI & Labs, at HPE.

The advanced supercomputing and AI technologies will also expand resources for larger projects to allow MBZUAI to attract global talent and create new economic and societal opportunities for the UAE, HPE pointed out.

In July 2022, Trimble’s Paul Wallett said that AI in construction won’t be taking jobs but it will save lives, while, later in the month, PlanRadar’s Ibrahim Imam said that robotics, AI, and IoT can alter business models, and make the process of project completion more efficient.

The supercomputer will be housed at MBZUAI’s new Campus Super Computing Center (CSCC) and will enable faculty members, researchers, and students to accelerate scientific discovery in many areas, including healthcare, structural engineering, law enforcement, supply chain, and sustainability.

In addition to meeting the research needs of the faculty and students, the new supercomputer will help MBZUAI fulfill its role as an AI talent developer and innovation hub that brings together the business community to drive entrepreneurship in the AI sector. MBZUAI already is contributing to significant initiatives such as the Emirati Genome Program, which uses AI-based tools to extract and interpret large amounts of complex data resulting from DNA sequencing, and the Abu Dhabi Health Services Company, SEHA, which uses AI algorithms to predict heart attacks, HPE explained.

“HPE has a longstanding commitment to advancing the way people live and work in the United Arab Emirates, through our Emiratisation program, Digital Life Garage, and industry and government partnerships,” said Ahmad Alkhallafi, Managing Director for UAE, Hewlett Packard Enterprise.

In September 2022, AVEVA’s Gary Wong discussed how digitisation is helping cities provide clean water, and, later in the month, His Highness Sheikh Hamdan launched the Dubai Robotics and Automation Program.

He continued, “We are proud to support the UAE’s national strategy for AI by helping MBZUAI grow its contribution to research and education. Supercomputing will play a crucial role in helping the UAE anticipate and take advantage of new AI technologies now and in the future. We look forward to helping the UAE meet its goal to be an AI leader by 2031.”

As a recently established institution, MBZUAI is still building its team of in-house supercomputing specialists. By collaborating with HPE, the university is gaining access to a large local team for supercomputing and AI support, in addition to world-leading technologies, the firm pointed out.

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