UF offers powerful new NVIDIA supercomputer to students and researchers across State University System

University of Florida’s new supercomputer -- the fastest artificial intelligence supercomputer in higher education -- will soon be available for students and faculty across the State University System, UF Provost Joe Glover announced today.

The computer will give faculty and students from across the State unparalleled computing power in artificial intelligence (AI) to apply across many areas to improve lives, bolster industry, and create economic growth across the state. The supercomputer -- known as HiPerGator AI -- is based on an NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD of 140 DGX A100 systems and NVIDIA Mellanox HDR InfiniBand networking. The system is the result of a donation from UF Alumnus Chris Malachowsky and NVIDIA, the leading AI computing company he co-founded.  It pairs with the third incarnation of UF’s general purpose supercomputer HiPerGator 3.0.

“Already, AI and data science technology are impacting every sector of the economy, from manufacturing and agriculture to financial technologies and drug development,” Glover said.  “By engaging the State University System and offering unprecedented access to groundbreaking technology, we are opening doors for researchers and students across the state who are eager to play a role in building a 21st century economy.”

UF’s offer to allow other State University System institutions to use HiPerGator AI for educational purposes at no charge is the latest development in a sweeping initiative that has the potential to reverberate nationally. Anchored by an $80 million research and education partnership with NVIDIA, UF’s vision includes a commitment to hire 100 new faculty focused on AI and a comprehensive push to infuse AI across academic disciplines. While many universities around the world have focused on developing core AI capabilities, UF’s plan to modify curricula across academic majors is the first of its kind and is expected to result in thousands of students graduating with the skills to apply AI and data science across all sectors of the economy.

Further, the power of HiPerGator AI will give researchers the tools to solve applied problems that were previously out of reach. Potential applications include enabling teachers to identify academically at-risk students even if they are learning remotely, bending the medical cost curve to a sustainable level, and identifying solutions to the problems facing Florida’s coastal communities and fresh water supply. For research purposes, UF will charge faculty across the entire State University System the same rates that UF faculty are charged.

“AI is transforming every segment of American life, with applications ranging from medical diagnostics and precision agriculture to advanced manufacturing and autonomous transportation,” said David Norton, UF’s vice president for research. “Analysts predict that the AI economy will represent over $10 trillion in economic output by the end of this decade. As home to a world-class university leading the way in AI research and education, Florida has an unparalleled opportunity to attract the best and brightest people and industries to our state.”

“AI is the driving force of innovation in healthcare, agriculture, climate and many more key industries in Florida, which makes it inspiring that UF is giving universities across the state access to HiPerGator AI,” said Cheryl Martin, director of Higher Education at NVIDIA. “UF’s model will serve as a blueprint for other universities that can share access to the performance of an NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD like HiPerGator AI to enable faculty, researchers and students to supercharge their work solving society’s biggest challenges.”

State University System institutions can apply for access to HiPerGator AI by contacting Erik Deumens at deumens@ufl.edu.

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The University of Florida’s mission is to prepare our students to lead and influence the next generation and beyond for economic, cultural and societal benefit. Recognized as among the top 10 public universities by U.S. News & World Report, UF is one of the nation’s largest public universities, and is the only member of the Association of American Universities in Florida. Teaching, research and scholarship, and service span all of the UF’s academic disciplines and represent its commitment to be a premier university that the state, nation and world look to for leadership. www.ufl.edu.

Brittany Wise January 27, 2021