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High-tech Chinese lab to boost marine research

By Xie Chuanjiao in Qingdao, Shandong | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-11-20 17:45

 A new lab to be built in eastern China will combine supercomputing and big data research to provide technical support for global marine research.

The Qingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology, Inspur Group, the National Supercomputer Center, and Peking, Tsinghua and Shandong universities signed an agreement to launched the project on Saturday.

"Marine research needs support from supercomputers, while the development of supercomputing is driven by its application in marine research," said Wu Lixin, head of the Qingdao lab's executive committee. "The joint laboratory will better serve ocean observation, analysis and forecasts."

The Qingdao lab is home to the world's fastest supercomputer for marine research, and by 2020 it aims to develop an exascale supercomputer capable of running at least 1 quintillion (1 followed by 18 zeros) floating-point calculations per second.

Also on Saturday, the Qingdao lab signed a strategic cooperative agreement with two national supercomputing centers, in Jinan and Wuxi, to establish a "supercomputing group". A deal was also agreed with China Telecom and the China Education and Research Network to support connections between the three partners.

"All parities — the joint lab, supercomputing group and telecom companies — will contribute to constructing a high-resolution simulator for global oceanic systems," said Wei Zhiqiang, vice-executive director of the joint lab project.

Building the simulator is one of the goals of the international lab operated by Qingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology, the US-based National Center for Atmospheric Research, and Texas A&M University.

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