European HPC Exascale Effort

The European HPC landscape is changing! The year 2019 sees the implementation of the EuroHPC JU.

The European High-Perfomance Computing Joint Undertaking (EuroHPC JU) pools European resources to develop top-of-the-range exascale supercomputers for processing big data, based on competitive European technology.

Our 2019 European HPC Handbook is available.

This professional publication includes up-to-date details of the European HPC Technology, Co-Design  and Application Projects within the European HPC ecosystem.

What follows below is a short summary of the development of European HPC. There is a list of documents and links at the end of this page which can be used as references (also several links are included in the text).

1. European HPC is based on three pillars: Research Infrastructure (PRACE - Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe), HPC Technology (represented by ETP4HPC) and Application Expertise (developed through the Centres of Excellence in Computing Applications  (CoEs)).

In this ecosystem:

  • ETP4HPC, the European HPC Technology platform, is an industry-led association and represents the European HPC technology value chain. ETP4HPC’s objective is to build a globally competitive HPC technology provision industry in European. Its main deliverable is the European HPC Strategic Research Agenda (SRA), which defines the priorities for research and development in HPC technology (and applications). The European funding organisations (such as the European Commission or the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking) use the SRA to define research project contents.  This pillar includes the HPC Technology projects tackling basic research in the area of HPC technology, Co-design projects (DEEP-EST and EuroExa), whose objective is to deliver a novel HPC system architecture in a co-design effort together with selected application domains.
  • PRACE is the European shared HPC research infrastructure funded byselected Member States and supported by the European Commission. It is a network of supercomputers at various tiers of computing power, which is available for scientific research projects based on a peer review process assessing the scientific value of the proposals (industry is able to use PRACE machine for research on the same conditions).
  • European Application Expertise is consolidated into the Centres of Excellence (CoE) in Computing Applications, projects whose task is to develop, maintain and enhance HPC applications in various domains such as material sciences, weather and climate, biomedicine as well as tackle other related issues such as performance and training.
  • /all of the above are described in our annual European HPC Handbook/

2. The development of European HPC is based on an EC strategy paper from 2012 - Communication "High Performance Computing (HPC): Europe's place in a global race". This document stipulates the operation of the three pillars above.

3. The European HPC strategy also provisions the establishment of a European HPC Technology Platform, which is now ETP4HPC (our association). At the moment, EU industry provides about 5% of HPC resources worldwide, but consumes one third of them and our objective is to increase the market share of the European technology vendors. Our main deliverable is the European HPC Technology Roadmap - Strategic Research Agenda (SRA). ETP4HPC is led by European HPC technology vendors and it also includes research centres and users.

4. The European HPC ecosystem is coordinated by the EXDCI project (European eXtreme Data and Computing Initiative - coordinating the European HPC Strategy). EXDCI organises an annual event called the 'European HPC Summit Week'.

5. The European Processor Initiative (EPI) gathers 23 partners from 10 European countries, with the aim to bring to the market a low power microprocessor. It gathers experts from the High Performance Computing (HPC) research community, the major supercomputing centres, and the computing and silicon industry as well as the potential scientific and industrial users. Through a co-design approach, it will design and develop the first European HPC Systems on Chip and accelerators. Both elements will be implemented and validated in a prototype system that will become the basis for a full Exascale machine based on European technology


In contrast with other regions in the world, Europe is a collection of independent states. The coordination of large ‘continental’ initiatives is thus more complex and requires the consensus and contribution of multiple governments.

EuroHPC is a Joint Undertaking of the EC and 29 European countries with an aim to fund world-class integrated European HPC and data infrastructure and support a highly competitive and innovative HPC and Big Data ecosystem. Its budget for 2019-20 is 1B Euro /the total European investment in HPC over the years 2021-2027 will be 2.7B Euro and EuroHPC will remain the main mechanism for this investment/.

The goals of EuroHPC are :

  • Acquisition and deployment of new supercomputing capabilities ( pre-exascale then exascale systems, and in the meantime several mid-range, multi-petascale systems) .
  • Common platform providing horizontal HPC-based services for industry, academia and public sector for widest access to HPC infrastructure.
  • Developing, preparing and optimising HPC codes and applications for future exascale and post-exascale systems, using co-design processes.
  • Creation of a network of HPC Competence Centres within the participating states.
  • Training and education-related activities to provide the scientific and industrial community with the skills they require to use HPC systems.

ETP4HPC chairs one of the two main advisory bodies of EuroHPC – its Research and Innovation Advisory Board. This body processes the ETP4HPC SRA, amongst other sources, and establishes the objectives of the EuroHPC funded research.

The activities of EuroHPC to date include:

  • Selection of consortia then preparation of the procurement of 3 pre-exascale machines* and 5 mid-range machines** (details below)
  • Funding Research and Innovation projects: exascale technologies and systems (including the European low-power processor); applications – the first EuroHPC call for proposals for a combined sum of 95M Euro was issued in Jul 2019.

* High-range Pre-Exascale Supercomputers:

  • 3 hosting sites for 3 multi-country consortia: Finland, Spain and Italy
  • Selected performance: 150-200 Pflops
  • Investment: ~€650 million (CAPEX+OPEX)
  • Open procurement starts in Q4 2019
  • Expected installation Q4 2020)

** Medium-to-high range Supercomputers:

  • 5 sites selected in 5 different countries, performance: at least 4 Pflops
  • Investment: 180 million Euros (CAPEX), 34 Million from EU



EC Presentation on EuroHPC – Sept 2019

EuroHPC Work Plan - the first calls

EU site on European HPC Strategy

PRACE - Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe

SHAPE - SME HPC Adoption Programme in Europe

EXDCI - European eXtreme Data and Computing Initiative - the European HPC strategy coordination project

SRA - ETP4HPC Strategic Research Agenda

BDVA - the European Big Data Value Association


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