The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) will introduce a new cutting-edge supercomputer through its affiliated laboratory to support the development of generative artificial intelligence (AI) in Japan, Nikkei has learned.
The National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) will develop a supercomputer with a computing capability roughly 2.5 times greater than its existing machine as early as 2024. Under METI’s supervision, the research arm will make it available through a cloud service to domestic companies developing generative AI.
AIST, one of Japan’s biggest research institutes, will establish a new research center for supercomputer and quantum technologies in July. METI will provide 32 billion yen ($226 million) to finance the installation of facilities.
AIST will operate the new supercomputer at the center for its studies on quantum technology and open it to Japanese companies. AIST’s existing supercomputer is accessible from outside via a cloud service.
The supercomputer for the development of AI has the largest computing capacity in Japan, which is more powerful than “Fugaku” at Riken. It is jointly used by 3,000 Japanese companies and researchers involved in the development of AI, including Hitachi and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.
However, the existing supercomputer is short on capability to process the huge amount of data learning processes required to develop generative AI. AIST thus will introduce the new supercomputer to clear the requirement.
Generative AI is expected to be used by companies to work out investment strategies and design products, among other things. In this field, foreign companies such as OpenAI of the U.S., developer of Chat GPT, are leading the way, and METI intends to get domestic companies involved as soon as possible.
It will also be important for economic security. It will handle a large volume of highly confidential data and aims to reduce its dependence on foreign countries. Private-sector companies in Japan, such as Sakura Internet, are planning to introduce new supercomputers, and the movement to enhance computing power is expanding.News Source: NIKKEI ASIA