A supercomputing lab in China uses quantum technology to predict the weather


China’s supercomputing innovation center Zhejiang Lab has applied its supercomputing technology to analyze weather data with more accurate results as the country develops its cutting-edge technologies in a bid to build an ecology of supercomputing applications at home. scale of a quintillion.

Founded in 2017, the lab is a research institute jointly built by the Zhejiang provincial government, Zhejiang University and Chinese technology company Alibaba Group.

Located in Hangzhou, East China’s Zhejiang Province, young researchers explored new fields and made advanced achievements in supercomputing technology at the Zhejiang Lab.

Researchers analyzed an immense amount of meteorological data on temperature, humidity, wind power and satellite cloud images in the Yangtze River Delta as the province entered a flood season during of which weather forecasts are crucial in helping to prevent potential hazards and economic costs.

“The resolution of ordinary weather forecasts is calculated in 10 kilometers, but our resolution is one kilometer. That is, the accuracy of our forecasts has increased tenfold,” said Qin Yi, an engineering expert. at the Zhejiang Lab.

In recent years, many data and application scenarios have posed many challenges to traditional computing. The Intelligent Supercomputing Research Center, one of the centers of Zhejiang Lab, was founded in April 2021, as part of the national supercomputing technology enhancement strategy.

The center’s researchers had to go it alone because supercomputing remains an emerging discipline in the world with many systematic theories to improve. The network, core facilities and supercomputing platforms were built after repeated design and testing.

In 2019, scientists around the world developed a quantum computer capable of performing a calculation in 200 seconds, which was expected to take a traditional supercomputer 10,000 years. Such an achievement inspired Zhejiang Lab researchers to advance their supercomputing technology.

“We hope to find a new way to integrate the computing capacity of artificial intelligence based on supercomputers, to realize a simulated application of quantum computing,” Qin said.

Young researchers in the laboratory have developed a quantum simulator after four months of effort. Installed with the simulator, the new generation of Sunway supercomputers could complete the “10,000-year calculation” in 304 seconds. Then they shortened the time to 150 seconds.

Sunway’s new exascale system for simulating quantum circuits has won the 2021 Gordon Bell Award from the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM).

Currently, the young researchers are further deepening the development of an intelligent supercomputing system and the construction of a supercomputing network platform.

“Now, we are not only building an intelligent supercomputing system, but also developing supercomputing network standards to fully share and efficiently organize computing resources between different supercomputing centers, and to support and serve more domains,” Qin said.

(With CCTV Plus input)


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