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Govt targets indigenous supercomputers under 3-phase project

PTI | New Delhi |

As part of the Modi government's 'Make in India' initiative, supercomputers will be manufactured in India under a three-phase programme, officials said.

In the initial two phases of the National Supercomputers Mission, the focus will be on designing and manufacturing subsystems such as high-speed Internet switches and compute nodes indigenously.

The Rs 4,500-crore project was approved by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs in March last year.

A Request for Proposal (RPF) for the project is in its final stages and is being executed by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), Pune, a research and development institution under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.

The NSM envisages nearly 50 supercomputers in three phases. The government has plans to make these high-precision computing machines available for scientific researches across the country. Milind Kulkarni, a senior scientist with the Ministry of Science and Technology who is over-looking the project, said the plan is to “have six supercomputers in the first phase”.

In the first phase, three supercomputers will be imported. System assemblies for the remaining three will be manufactured abroad, but assembled in India. C-DAC will responsible for the overall system design.

Two supercomputers will have a peak operational capacity of two petaflops and the rest will be of 500 teraflops.

Floating point operations per second (FLOPS) is the standard unit to measure computational power.

A petaflop can be expressed as a thousand trillion floating point operations per second. A teraflop is equal to one million million floating-point operations per second.

The six supercomputers will be placed at four IITs –Banaras Hindu University, Kanpur, Kharagpur and Hyderabad –Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Pune, and Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru.