DOE Lab Unveils IBM-Built ‘Summit’ Supercomputer to Back AI, Energy Research

An Energy Department-backed national laboratory in Tennessee has launched a computer system IBM designed to support research in artificial intelligence, advanced materials, energy and other areas.

The Summit supercomputer at Oak Ridge National Laboratory works to perform up to 200,000 trillion calculations per second or approximately 200 petaflops of computing power, DOE said Friday.

“I am truly excited by the potential of Summit, as it moves the nation one step closer to the goal of delivering an exascale supercomputing system by 2021,” Energy Secretary Rick Perry said Friday during the platform’s launch.

The agency said Summit is designed to compute three decades’ worth of data on a desktop computer within 60 minutes and offers opportunities that support the White House’s AI initiative unveiled in May.

IBM and ORNL, which also houses the Titan supercomputer, will collaborate on the acceptance process for the computing platform that will be open to selected research projects this year.

Research teams that were picked through the department’s Innovative and Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment program will have access to Summit in 2019.

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