Chinese delegation visits Wales to learn about supercomputing


A team of Chinese delegates have visited Wales to learn about its unique supercomputing network.

25 members of China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology visited High Performance Computing (HPC) Wales’ Cardiff Hub last month to find out about its facilities and collaboration with Welsh universities, following a recommendation to visit from the China-Wales Higher Education Training Consortium.

Hosted by HPC Wales staff – Laura Redfern, Dr Christine Kitchen, Professor Martyn Guest, Andy Thomas and James Pack – the visitors received presentations detailing the types of innovative research being conducted with the support of the supercomputing technology.

The delegates then benefited from a tour of the Hub, which is located at Cardiff University and connected to a national distributed network of supercomputers in Universities and business centres across Wales.

China currently hosts eight supercomputing centres across the country in cities including Tianjin, Beijing and Shanghai. It is also home to the fastest supercomputer in the world, Tianhe-2.

Part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government, HPC Wales is committed to boosting the Welsh economy by providing academic researchers and businesses with some of the most advanced computing technology in the world. 

Professor Martyn Guest, Technical Director of HPC Wales, said:

“It was a great pleasure to welcome the team of delegates to Wales and we were honoured to be given the opportunity to present the Cardiff Hub of HPC Wales to the team.

“It is pleasing that China, one of the most technically advanced countries in the world, sent a delegation from their Ministry of Industry and Information Technology to learn about our supercomputing network. This is certainly an indicator of the innovative and exciting research being powered by HPC Wales and something we can be proud of.  

Laura Redfern, Training and Outreach Mentor at HPC Wales, added:

“We very much enjoyed meeting the members of the Chinese delegation and will be sure to keep them informed of HPC Wales’ developments. Their clear interest in our methods for fostering the interest and engagement of Welsh business was particularly pleasing.”

Mr Li Yong, Vice Director General of the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology

Mr Li Yong, Vice Director General of the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and leader of the delegation, said:

“HPC Wales is certainly an interesting venture and I’m very impressed with its make-up in collaboration with all of the Welsh universities.

“In China, we have similar high performance computing systems within our research groups but they haven’t yet taken the same approach to small businesses, as displayed here in Wales.

“I’m very pleased to have learnt more about the exciting work being performed using supercomputers in Wales, and I’m sure it will have very positive effects on businesses across the country.”