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US and UAE supercomputer venture advances AI training

AI training supercomputer Reuters/Rebecca Lewington, Cerebras
Cerebras and G42 unveil world’s largest supercomputer for AI training
  • UAE tech firm G42 co-launches supercomputer to speed up AI training
  • Deal with California tech company Cerebras is around $100m
  • Over 500 business leaders in the UAE have already implemented AI

US artificial intelligence tech firm Cerebras signed a $100 million deal with UAE tech holding company G42 on Thursday to supply the first of three AI supercomputers.

A planned network of nine interconnected supercomputers, Condor Galaxy (GC) will be the largest of its kind in the world, and will significantly reduce AI model training time.

The first AI supercomputer on this network, CG-1, has four exaflops [4 quintillion floating point operations per second], the measure of how many operations a computer can perform at any given time.

Cerebras and G42 are planning to deploy two more such supercomputers, CG-2 and CG-3, in the US in early 2024.

When completed, the overall system will reach a combined AI training capacity of 36 exaflops – 36 quintillion operations per second.

Talal Al Kaissi, CEO of G42 Cloud, one of G42’s nine subsidiaries, said: “The compute in this partnership will play a large role in the ability to create disruptive change in different sectors.” 

G42 already works across finance, sports, healthcare and space, added Al Kaissi. “We’re just at the start of the journey with AI and its possibilities.”

AI training supercomputerCerebras
The Cerebras and G42 partnership delivers on compute, vast datasets, and specialised AI expertise

Andrew Feldman, CEO of Cerebras, said his company had raised nearly $750 million to develop this technology.

He added that G42 was a “kindred spirit” and that AI represents “the largest technological shift in a generation”.

Among the projects already underway are a Chat GPT tool entirely in Arabic and large language models, which have deep learning algorithms that can recognise, summarise, translate, predict, and generate content using large datasets.

Feldman said that researchers at Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence in Abu Dhabi are already using CG-1.

Al Kaissi said: “G42 is the national AI champion for the UAE, and we take this responsibility seriously.

“We have a national AI plan in the UAE. As a private company with a multi-faceted group of industry companies, we have to play a role in this development, and to support more broadly the effort to increase generative AI’s role and large language models, and how that can be used on an enterprise scale.”

The UAE was the first nation to appoint a minister for AI in their federal government.

The Gulf state’s private sector is on board, too. A study by Coursera and YouGov revealed that 83 percent of UAE businesses were ready to integrate generative AI into their operations.

And 82 percent — more than 500 business leaders in the UAE — said they had already implemented AI into their existing offerings.