HPCQS LogoOn the way to a world-class supercomputing ecosystem – HPCQS is a pioneer for federated quantum supercomputing in Europe

With the “High-Performance Computer and Quantum Simulator hybrid” (HPCQS) project, Europe is entering a new era of hybrid quantum high-performance computing. The aim is to closely connect two quantum simulators, each with over 100 qubits, with two European supercomputers. The infrastructure project is part of the research and innovation action “Advanced pilots towards the European exascale Supercomputers” and is funded by the European High-Performance Computing Joint Undertaking (EuroHPC JU) based in Luxembourg. HPCQS has a total budget of 12 million euros over 4 years, which is financed in equal parts by EuroHPC JU and the participating member states.

EuroHPC JU is a joint initiative of the EU, European countries and private partners to develop a world-class supercomputing ecosystem in Europe. The aim of the HPCQS project with its ambitious research programme, which starts on 1 December, is to acquire and commission two quantum simulators with more than 100 quantum bits (qubits) via a public procurement of innovative solutions (PPI). The Jülich Supercomputing Centre (JSC) at Forschungszentrum Jülich is one of the five participating European HPC centres with Prof. Kristel Michielsen as project coordinator.

HPCQS aims to develop, set up and coordinate a European federated infrastructure. This will include two quantum simulators (QS), each with more than 100 qubits, which will be connected to two computing systems of the highest performance class: the modular supercomputer JUWELS, Europe’s fastest supercomputer in the Jülich Supercomputing Centre (JSC), and the high-performance computer Joliot Curie, which was developed by the French national supercomputing agency GENCI in the supercomputing centre TGCC of the French Commissariat for Atomic Energy and Alternative Energies (CEA) is operated.

The seamless integration of quantum hardware with classical computing resources to create a hybrid system is seen as an essential step towards harnessing the power of quantum computers for initial practical applications.

“HPCQS will be a first ‘small step’ for European scientific teams, but it will certainly also prepare the expected ‘giant leap’ towards exceptionally powerful computing in the near future. We are very pleased to shape this future together with our European partners,” said Philippe Lavocat, Chairman and CEO of GENCI.


By pooling the efforts of universities, including research and technology organisations, and industry, Europe will boost its future competitiveness by tackling applications related to complex simulations and optimisation problems, such as material and drug development, logistics and transport and many other relevant use cases. HPCQS will play a key role by enabling research institutions and industry to take advantage of the new quantum technologies and find solutions to complex problems.

As part of the four-year pilot project HPCQS, the programming platform for the quantum simulator is now being developed. It is based on two European software developments, the Atos Quantum Learning Machine (QLM) and ParTec’s Parastation Modulo. Together, these technologies enable the deep, low-latency integration of quantum simulators in classical modular HPC systems as the first ever realization of a system of its kind.

“HPCQS is a logical continuation of Jülich’s efforts, which are being driven forward by JUNIQ, the annual user infrastructure for quantum computing, to establish close hybrid quantum HPC simulations,” explains Prof. Dr. Astrid Lambrecht, Deputy Chair of Forschungszentrum Jülich. “Together with our industrial partners ParTec and Atos as well as other European companies, HPCQS will demonstrate European sovereignty in this area.”


HPCQS will develop and provide a hardware-independent, comprehensive programming environment “made in Europe” aimed directly at end users of quantum computing and hybrid quantum HPC applications.

“HPCQS is the first quantum computing initiative supported by EuroHPC JU. The HPCQS system will enable the European research community to develop breakthrough algorithms and applications using combined quantum and classical HPC resources,” explains Anders Dam Jensen, Executive Director of EuroHPC JU.

QLMTM and Parastation ModuloTM play a central role in this. In addition, HPCQS partners will also work on the introduction of a complete hybrid software stack. These include cloud access, resource management for hybrid workloads, tools and libraries that include benchmark tools, certification and performance analysis. The involvement of users in the co-design will lead to prototype applications in the field of machine learning and scientific simulations, including the Variational Quantum Eigensolver (VQE) and the Quantum Approximate Optimization Algorithm (QAOA).

HPCQS is an open and evolutionary infrastructure that will be expanded in the future by incorporating a variety of quantum computing platforms at different technological maturities and by the possibility of integrating other European quantum nodes. The HPCQS infrastructure is thus a first step towards a European Quantum Computing and Simulation Infrastructure (EuroQCS), as advocated in the strategic research agenda of the European quantum flagship project.

“Access to the HPCQS infrastructure will make it possible to exploit the broad knowledge and emerging technological solutions found in the academic and industrial European environment, supported by experts from the European HPC centres,” explains Prof. Kristel Michielsen. “In addition, HPCQS will strengthen ongoing efforts in Europe to support quantum start-ups through the application of quantum technology by academic institutions and industry.”


To achieve these goals, HPCQS brings together leading quantum and supercomputer experts from science and industry from six European countries. HPCQS is expected to become a globally unique incubator for practical quantum HPC hybrid computing.HPCQS Logo

The five participating European HPC centers JSC at Forschungszentrum Jülich (Tier 0 site, Germany), GENCI /CEA (Tier 0 site, France), Barcelona Supercomputing Center (Tier 0 and pre-exascale site, Spain), CINECA (Tier 0 and pre-exascale site, Italy) and NUIG-ICHEC (Tier 1 site, Ireland) work closely with the technology partners Atos (France), ParTec (Germany), FLySigth (Italy), ParityQC (Austria), the research partners CEA (France), CNRS (France), Inria (France), CNR (Italy), the University of Innsbruck (Austria), Fraunhofer IAF (Germany) and the SME partner Eurice (Germany) together to achieve their common goals. In addition, the HPCQS project has received more than thirty letters of support from academia, industry, SMEs and start-ups, underlining the high expectations of the European user community.

Source:  Forschungszentrum Jülich.  Forschungszentrum Jülich,  On the way to a world-class supercomputing ecosystem – HPCQS is a pioneer for federated quantum supercomputing in Europe…

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