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European High Performance Computing Leaders discuss Strategy to reach Exaflops Performance

Geneva, May 23, 2011 - High Performance Computing (HPC) is an established key technology for scientific progress and industrial competitiveness. While the leading European HPC centers (e.g. the PRACE centers) are currently installing and operating Petascale systems, demand for even higher performance level grows.


To make Exascale computing a reality by end of the decade, a set of new challenges has to be addressed and solved: Extreme scalability, Resilience and Power Management - at all levels from the processor, memory and interconnect all the way up to middleware, programming models and applications.


Exascale computing requires coordinated global efforts, and Europe must position itself to lead these efforts in the areas where Europe is strongest.


Intel invited the European thought leaders in exascale to the first “Intel Exascale Leadership Conference”, to bring together experts from HPC centers, European R&D centers, European industry, and European policy makers to share their view on the challenges ahead for Europe and on strategies to address them. In the prestigious Globe for Science and Innovation, CERN conference center, keynote speakers from the European Commission, PRACE, and European HPC users shared their views on the chances and challenges of exascale computing and their strategies and roadmaps. Intel executives Steve Pawlowski (Senior Fellow, CTO of the Intel Architecture Group) Shekhar Borkar (Fellow, Intel Labs), and Antonio Gonzalez (Senior Principal Engineer and Director Intel Labs Barcelona) gave an outlook on Intel’s technology roadmap towards exascale.


Bob Jones, director openlab at CERN, said: “We were delighted to host the Intel Exascale Leadership conference at CERN’s Globe for Science and Innovation and the presence of such a diverse and relevant set of stakeholders created a rich platform for debate on the challenges and path to Exascale Computing”.





Intel is a key HPC technology provider and will address the exascale challenges in close collaboration with R&D organizations, system vendors, software and application developers, and end users. To establish this cooperation with key European players, Intel has recently founded three exascale research labs, in Paris, Leuven and Juelich. In these labs Intel works with its partners on new algorithms, programming paradigms, tools and applications, and their influence on future HPC hardware designs. Intel also participates in the International Exascale Software Program (IESP) as well as the European Exascale Software Initiative (EESI).


“It was interesting to see how the European HPC data centers and users plan to approach exascale computing,” said Karl Solchenbach, Intel Director European Exascale Labs. “Through our European exascale labs we will closely work with European HPC thought leaders to implement a co-design process leading towards exascale.”


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