In a time where all eyes of the world have been watching the fight against COVID-19 play out, the central role of high-performance computing has been brought into sharp focus. Next month, the supercomputing community is set to gather online for the EuroHPC Summit Week 2021, giving delegates the chance to hear about this globally important research.
High-performance computing has been in the spotlight like never before over the past year, as the largest supercomputers in the world have been pushed to their limits to try and find solutions as fast as possible to combat the virus that has swept the globe.
“High-performance computing is of vital importance in the fight against this new virus,” says Serge Bogaerts, Managing Director of PRACE. “That’s why we have dedicated an entire day of the EuroHPC Summit Week 2021 to highlight the breakthroughs and achievements of researchers using the power of supercomputers to save lives.”
Many of the biggest scientific breakthroughs related to how COVID-19 is spread and to the development of vaccines and treatments have been made using the formidable power of supercomputers, and the huge programme of emergency research that was set up in Europe by PRACE to enable this continues on today.
“Right at the start of the pandemic, PRACE began providing fast-track access to its most powerful computers to researchers working on COVID-19. Now, during the EuroHPC Summit Week we are proud to highlight so much of this work that has gone so far in mitigating the impact of the pandemic,” says Matej Praprotnik, Chair of the PRACE Scientific Steering Committee.
As well as showcasing this important and ground-breaking work against COVID-19, EuroHPC Summit Week will bring together researchers, technology suppliers and industry users of supercomputers to discuss the latest findings and breakthroughs in the community. This year’s event was due to be held in Portugal but has been moved online.
“The speedy response of PRACE in the fight against the pandemic is an excellent example of how science can efficiently address the problems today’s society faces,” says Laura Grigori, Vice-Chair of the PRACE Scientific Steering Committee. “During the EuroHPC Summit Week, several other tracks and talks will show how this is not only true for the fight against viruses, but also for the challenges faced in many other areas.”
Broader issues surrounding COVID-19 will also be discussed at this year’s summit, including the impacts of the pandemic on different demographics and what tech companies and academia can do to support their diverse workforces. Diversity in the world of high-performance computing will be the main focus of an afternoon of presentations and discussions at the event, with a number of talks from different communities offering up their experiences and advice.