Government signs deal to buy Rs 4,500 crore worth of supercomputers
The Government of India has entered into a deal with the European IT company Atos to buy supercomputers worth Rs 4,500 crore for use by academic and research institutions across India.
The contract was signed by Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), which comes under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology on the Indian side. Jean Yves Le Drian, Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs in France and Ajay Prakash Sawhney, secretary – Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, were also present at the contract signing.
Jean stated at the event, “India and France have a strategic partnership and we are two nations that innovate a lot. It is true that supercomputers are a necessity and not a luxury. We often say that data for the 21st century is what oil was to the 20th century, we are using data in a massive way and that raises questions of ethics. India and France share not only interests but also values that require us to use technology for good for humanity.”
This deal is part of the National Supercomputing Mission launched by the government in 2015 that aimed at setting up 73 high-performance computing facilities at research and academic institutions across India at a cost of Rs 4,500 crore over seven years.
With this contract, Atos can now bring its Bull Sequana supercomputers in India, which will have cumulative computing power over 10 petaflops (one petaflop is equal to a thousand trillion floating point operations per second).
In January this year, the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) launched Pratyush, an array of computers with a peak power of 6.8 petaflops for weather and climate research, after Japan, US and the UK.
Pratyush is India’s fastest supercomputer till date.