Supercomputer Inaugurated at KIT

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology
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Minister Theresia Bauer and Vice-President Oliver Kraft inaugurating the HoreKa supercomputer at KIT. (Photo: Riccardo Prevete, KIT)

The new supercomputer of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is among the 15 fastest computers in Europe and among the 13 computers with the highest energy efficiency worldwide. The enormous computing capacity of the Karlsruhe High-performance Computer, HoreKa for short, will enable new findings in climate, energy, and medical research. Today (July 30, 2021), Theresia Bauer, Baden-Württemberg Minister for Science, Research, and the Arts, handed over the 15-million-euro machine to the scientific community.

“I am very happy to inaugurate the new supercomputer today. With HoreKa, we will not only strengthen Baden-Württemberg as a location of research. Within the National High-performance Computing Alliance, we will also make an important contribution to the German science ecosystem. High-performance computing is indispensable in cutting-edge research and we are proud to actively steer this development with our investments,” Science Minister Theresia Bauer says.

“Creating knowledge to cope with the challenges faced by our society and our environment is a major part of our mission at KIT,” President of KIT, Professor Holger Hanselka, emphasizes. “Highly powerful supercomputers, such as HoreKa, are indispensable tools for the quick development of scientific findings and the corresponding solutions by our scientists. Moreover, HoreKa will provide our students with research experience they can gain nowhere else.”

“The impressive computing capacity of HoreKa will enable us to make many new discoveries in climate, energy, and materials research as well as in the life sciences,” says Professor Oliver Kraft, KIT Vice-President for Research. “The faster supercomputers process data, the more detailed and reliable will the simulations be. HoreKa does not only set new standards in terms of speed, but also in energy efficiency. This is important to supercomputing and to conducting responsible research.”

HoreKa: Among the Fastest in Europe, World-class in Energy Efficiency

HoreKa reaches a peak capacity of 17 PetaFLOPS – 17 quadrillion computing operations per second -, corresponding to the capacity of about 150,000 laptops. The 15-million-euro supercomputer is one of the fastest in Europe. In the top-500 list of the fastest computers worldwide that is published twice a year, HoreKa is presently ranked 52nd. In addition, it is world-class in energy efficiency. “Supercomputers consume a lot of energy, but HoreKa uses this energy far more efficiently than conventional PCs and laptops,” says Dr. Jennifer Buchmüller, Head of the High-performance Computing Group of KIT’s Steinbuch Centre for Computing. In international comparison, HoreKa presently reaches 13th place in terms of energy efficiency.

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