A significant addition of power to Israel's computing power. Nvidia announced today (Monday) that it will build in Israel, at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars, one of the most powerful supercomputers in the world in the field of artificial intelligence. The computer, Israel-1, is expected to enter initial use by the end of the year, and will initially be used by Nvidia for research and development and cooperation with industry.
Going forward, the computer will be available as part of Nvidia's NVIDIA DGX Cloud supercomputing service, so organizations, startups, research organizations and more can use it. Nvidia, which acquired Israel's Mellanox in 2020 for $7 billion, has about 3,000 employees in Israel. Its R&D center is located in Yokneam.
Supercomputers are actually an integrated array of tens and hundreds of thousands of processing units, connected to each other and operating together under one operating system. Supercomputers are used to perform demanding computational tasks such as drug development, molecule deciphering, quantum mechanics research, weather forecasting and climate research, oil and gas detection, running models and simulations, and solving many other problems that involve many variables and require performing a large number of calculations in parallel that ordinary computers cannot perform.
HGX Supercomputer, photo: courtesy of Nvidia
8 times 1018 operations per second
According to Nvidia's specifications, Israel-1 will include 2,048 Nvidia H100 GPUs, each containing 80 billion transistors. And with more than 34 million CUDA cores and over 2 million 560G Tensor cores. In addition, the supercomputer will combine 3,80 BlueField-4 DPU processors and <> Spectrum-<> switches - all developed in Israel. In fact, the architecture of the Israeli supercomputer will be based on the new Spectrum-X platform developed by Nvidia in Israel and will serve as a template for building additional supercomputers.
Supercomputers' performance is measured by the number of operations they can perform per second, or FLOPS for short. The Israel-1 computer is expected to deliver AI performance of up to 8 exaflops, i.e. 8 times 1018 operations per second. In doing so, it will be one of the fastest AI supercomputers in the world, and will allow for shorter training and running times for generative AI models. In addition, it is expected to deliver performance of more than 135 petaflops (peta = 1015) in classic supercomputing tasks.
According to the Top50 list, which gathers the 500 most powerful supercomputers in the world, as of November 2022, the fastest supercomputer in the world is Frontier, located at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee, USA, and boasts a computational capacity of 1,102 petaflops. Because of their power, supercomputers are strategically important in the balance of power between the superpowers. According to the Top500 list, of the 500 most powerful supercomputers in the world, 150 are in the United States, while 134 are in China. Germany and Japan also have a high concentration of supercomputers. It seems that according to accepted measures, Israel-1 will rank among the ten most powerful supercomputers in the world.
Gilad Shiner, senior vice president of supercomputing and communications at Nvidia, said Israel-1 represents a huge investment for Nvidia. "This will enable us to drive innovation in Israel and around the world. Artificial intelligence is the most important technological force in our lives."
Gilad Shiner, Senior Vice President of Computing and Connectivity, photo: Courtesy of Nvidia
Nvidia, which specializes in the development of graphics processors and accelerated computing solutions, is one of the largest and most important technology companies in the world, and is considered a leader in fields such as high-performance computing (HPC), artificial intelligence, gaming, blockchain and more. Last Thursday, the company reported first-quarter revenue of $7.2 billion, including $4.2 billion from data centers. The company's stock jumped 24% following the report's release, amid growing demand for the company's solutions as part of the acceleration of artificial intelligence. The company's market capitalization on NASDAQ is close to $<> trillion.
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