The Jules Verne consortium on the road to exascale
The Jules Verne consortium brings together France, represented by the Grand Equipement National de Calcul Intensif (GENCI) as the hosting entity, in collaboration with the Commissariat à l'énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives (CEA) as the hosting site, and the Netherlands, represented by SURF, the Dutch national supercomputing center.
The main objective of this consortium is to deploy a world-class Exascale supercomputer, based on European hardware and software technologies. It will make it possible to respond to major societal and scientific challenges via the convergence at scale of numerical simulations, massive data analysis and artificial intelligence.
This project responds to major societal and global challenges corresponding to the national strategies of the Netherlands and France, notably within the framework of France 2030 for the latter. The supercomputer will act as a sovereign gas pedal in the finer modeling of the effects of climate change, in the development of new materials, energies and decarbonized mobility solutions, in the creation of digital twins of the human body enabling personalized medicine, or in training the next generation of generative AI or multimodal models. It will also address the challenges posed by the explosion of data generated by scientific instruments (such as telescopes, satellites, sequencers, microscopes, sensor networks...), IoT/Internet devices or large-scale multi-digital simulations. This avalanche of data makes the use of these supercomputers crucial for science, industry and decision-makers, in order to process this data in competitive timescales and in the most energy-efficient way possible.
Following the deployment of EuroHPC systems such as JUPITER (in Germany), the first Exascale system in Europe in 2024, Jules Verne will provide European, French and Dutch researchers with an unprecedented computing capacity of over 1 Exaflop/s - a billion billion ("1" followed by 18 zeros) operations per second, equivalent to over 5 million modern laptops, and over 300 PB of storage at startup.
An exascale supercomputer in 2025 at the TGCC
After being acquired by the EuroHPC joint venture, this supercomputer will be housed at the CEA's Très Grand Centre de Calcul (TGCC) by the end of 2025. It will benefit from the expertise of the latter's High-Performance Computing (HPC) division in operating large-scale systems such as Joliot-Curie (GENCI, for open research) and Topaze (CCRT, Centre de Calcul Recherche et Technologie, for industrial research).
The supercomputer concept is based on a modular, energy-efficient architecture offering multiple computing, pre/post-processing and service partitions federated by a high-speed internal interconnection, sharing access to a data-centric storage architecture and managed by a unified administration and resource management system. Taking advantage of current French and European initiatives, the supercomputer will also incorporate experimental partitions of hybrid quantum computing, and will be able to integrate new European sovereign technologies, paving the way for post-Exascale architectures.