Nvidia, the world’s leading chip company, announced plans on Monday to build Israel’s most powerful artificial intelligence (AI) supercomputer, driven by the increasing customer demand for AI applications. The cloud-based system, known as Israel-1, is projected to cost hundreds of millions of dollars and will be partially operational by the end of 2023.
According to Gilad Shainer, Nvidia’s Senior Vice President, the company collaborates with 800 startups and tens of thousands of software engineers in Israel. The Israel-1 system aims to deliver exceptional performance, capable of achieving up to eight exaflops of AI computing power, which would position it as one of the world’s fastest AI supercomputers. To put this into perspective, an exaflop denotes the ability to execute one quintillion calculations per second.
Shainer emphasized the significance of AI as the most pivotal technology of our time, particularly in the development of generative AI applications. To facilitate this progress, substantial graphics processing units (GPUs) are essential. He explained that generative AI is increasingly pervasive, necessitating the ability to conduct training on extensive datasets. With the Israel-1 supercomputer, companies in Israel will gain access to an advanced computing infrastructure that was previously unavailable.
The former Mellanox team, acquired by Nvidia in 2019 for nearly $7 billion, played a crucial role in developing the Israel-1 system. Notably, Nvidia’s GPUs were instrumental in creating OpenAI’s ChatGPT, showcasing the significance of high-performance computing in AI advancements.
While Nvidia’s primary focus for the supercomputer lies in supporting Israeli partners, Shainer indicated that the system could potentially be utilized by external partners in the future. This development signifies Nvidia’s commitment to fostering collaborations and empowering innovators globally.
In addition to the Israel-1 project, Nvidia recently partnered with the University of Bristol in the UK to construct a cutting-edge supercomputer that leverages a new Nvidia chip. This initiative aims to compete with industry giants such as Intel and Advanced Micro Devices Inc., further solidifying Nvidia’s position as a key player in the realm of advanced computing.
The construction of the AI supercomputer in Israel highlights Nvidia’s dedication to meeting the growing demand for AI solutions. As AI continues to transform industries, this infrastructure will empower Israeli companies to accelerate their training processes, develop intricate frameworks, and tackle complex challenges. With its unrivaled computational power, the Israel-1 supercomputer holds the potential to revolutionize AI research and development, cementing Israel’s position as a hub for technological innovation.