5th Webinar - Moving Forward/2021 Edition: Supercomputing and its applications

23/07/2021     V21 / Moving Forward / Webinar / Supercomputing

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The 5th webinar of the second series of the "Moving Forward - 2021 Edition" webinars, promoted in partnership by Altice Labs and V21 - Technology Incubation Center of Viseu took place on the 7th of July.

In this session, the theme was "Supercomputing and its applications" which is a topic that is beginning to leave the more scientific and academic domains and gaining interest in almost all areas of economic activity.

Opening the webinar, Pedro Carvalho, from Altice Labs, introduced Supercomputing, from its genesis in 1956 to the present day and to the fastest HPC (High Performance Computer) in the world, FUGAKU, a Japanese computer capable of reaching speeds of 450PFlops (1PetaFlop = 10^15 - or 1,000,000,000,000,000 - floating point operations per second). He also highlighted the impact that the explosion of personal computing in the 1980s had on the development of the microprocessors that were ultimately instrumental in the latest generations of HPC. Finally, he explained how the branch of quantum computing emerged in 1982, following a publication by the famous Nobel prize-winning scientist Richard Feynman, entitled "Simulating Physics with Computers", in which he stated that in order to model the systems of quantum physics it would be necessary to have quantum computers.

The webinar continued with Alcino Lavrador, general manager of Altice Labs, inviting Bruno Januário from Softinsa/IBM to talk about his area of expertise, the development of analytical software, which addressed the IBM quantum computers solution and the modular SDK for Qiskit quantum computing, having been highlighted several use cases including an application of quantum robots in the automotive industry.

Next, Alcino Lavrador invited João Barbosa from MACC (Minho Advanced Computing Center) to talk about Supercomputing in Portugal. João Barbosa addressed the three vectors of action of supercomputing in Portugal and the existing HPC centres in Guimarães (supercomputers BOB 1PFlop and Deucalion 10PFlop, still being installed), in Coimbra, Lisbon and Evora. He then explained how these supercomputers have been used in climate analysis, biotechnology, materials science and also in the mold industry.

Before the closing by the President of the Board of Vissaium XXI, José Couto, there was still the opportunity for Alcino Lavrador to moderate a discussion moment and asking questions that contributed to the clarification of Portugal's position in the areas of Quantum Computing and Supercomputing, anticipating the growing presence in various areas of science, industry and society.

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