For some years now, data has been presented as the new oil. But just like oil, data will only generate substantial value once it has been processed. For although most companies have large amounts of data today, they are not necessarily using it to its full potential.
To help Luxembourg companies seize the opportunities generated by the exploitation of data, Luxinnovation, the University of Luxembourg and LuxProvide have joined forces to set up the National Competence Centre (NCC) for High Performance Computing (HPC).
Its objective is to promote and facilitate the use of HPC, related to computing, data analysis or artificial intelligence, by industry – in particular SMEs -, academia and public administration.
The NCC focuses on three main areas that offer various services to companies:
- personalised support with the identification of HPC opportunities arising from the exploitation of data, according to the users’ needs and interests, but also with funding opportunities, partnerships and the implementation of research, development and innovation projects;
- technical expertise to contribute to feasibility studies, proofs of concept and technology transfer as well as to give access to the HPC infrastructure of LuxProvide (MeluXina) or the University of Luxembourg
- skills development to acquire, through various training courses, the expertise needed to become an independent HPC user.
We need to build a holistic ecosystem of solutions that can really support companies throughout their innovation cycle,
explains Pascal Bouvry, professor at the University of Luxembourg and co-CEO of LuxProvide, which is in charge of installing and operating the MeluXina supercomputer and a partner of the national competence centre for high performance computing.
Tangible benefits for companies adopting HPC
Getting access to high computing power in order to extract information more quickly from raw data can mean the difference between gaining a competitive edge or missing the opportunity and falling behind, says Professor Bouvry.
HPC brings enormous benefits to companies using it.
There are three major advantages to using HPC:
- Enormous time savings: HPC makes very high speed data processing possible. Whether it is for data analysis or solving engineering equations, a supercomputer is an extremely powerful tool. It helps to save time and therefore shortens the time to market.
- Cost reduction: Due to its data processing and simulation capabilities, companies are able to minimise the amount of trial and error during the design phase, deliver results faster and therefore save more money. According to recent figures, the cost of the design process can be reduced by up to 10 times, prototyping savings can be as high as 60% and labour savings 33%.
- The pay-per-use principle: as a shared infrastructure, the HPC can be made available and used according to the need for computing resources, which can be increased or reduced as required.
HPC enables companies to be at the forefront of the data revolution. “In an increasingly competitive and uncertain global market, companies are striving to be innovative and digital transformation is part of their strategy. By integrating new technologies and using digital capabilities, such as HPC, they will be best placed to excel in tomorrow’s economy,” explains Benjamin Questier, strategic advisor at Luxinnovation.
Integration into the European network
The usefulness of the Luxembourg national centre of competence in high performance computing also lies in its integration into the European network. “The network stimulates interaction and the exchange of expertise between the national centres in other European countries in order to best meet the needs of HPC users in their countries or in Europe,” explains Ramona Caulea, European Project Administrator at Luxinnovation.
The Luxembourg National Competence Centre for HPC is being set up as part of the EuroCC project, co-financed by the European Union via the EuroHPC funds and by the Ministry of the Economy. The project aims to establish national competence centres as contact points for all HPC activities on the national level in 33 countries across Europe, and to link them together to form a European network.
Photo credit: LuxProvide