EU plans to use supercomputer to create “digital twin” of Earth

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The computer will be used to study and model climate change, among other things.

The European Union is planning to create a giant supercomputer to study climate change with a simulated twin of our planet. The EU calls the upcoming computer Destination Earth, or DestinE for short. The computer will use 20,000 Graphic Processors (GPUs) and will be able to create a highly accurate copy of Earth down to kilometer-scale. The planner claim that the computer will be able to simulate how climate change will affect the global population. Scientists and researchers will be able to vary conditions and then project the effects on food security, ocean levels, global temperature, and other aspects of life on Earth.

Seeking to “unlock the potential of digital modelling”

The EU published an outline of the project earlier this month. “The objective of the Destination Earth initiative is to develop a very high precision digital model of the Earth to monitor and simulate natural and human activity,” they write. The project will also be used to develop and test scenarios that would enable more sustainable development. These will in turn support European environmental policies, they add.

“Destination Earth (DestinE) will contribute to the European Commission’s Green Deal and Digital Strategy. It will unlock the potential of digital modelling of the Earth’s physical resources. It will also look at related phenomena such as climate change on a global scale,” they write.

The ultimate purpose of DestinE is to speed up the green transition, according to the EU. This will help plan for major environmental degradation and disasters. Using public datasets across Europe, DestinE will also represent a key component of the European Strategy for Data.

DestinE is also part of the EU’s $1 trillion initiative to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. The EU researchers hope to have the supercomputer up and running within the next seven to ten years.