The United Kingdom has announced a significant increase in funding for the development of two supercomputers dedicated to advancing research into the safety of advanced artificial intelligence (AI) models. This announcement was made during an AI safety summit focused on ensuring the responsible development of AI technologies.
The AI Research Resource project will see its funding increase from the initially allocated 100 million pounds to an impressive 300 million pounds ($363.57 million). This substantial investment underlines the UK government’s commitment to ensuring the safety and responsible use of cutting-edge AI technology.
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak emphasized the urgency of the matter, stating, “Frontier AI models are becoming exponentially more powerful. This investment will make sure Britain’s scientific talent have the tools they need to make the most advanced models of AI safe.”
The UK government envisions two new supercomputers, one located in Cambridge and the other in Bristol, which will grant researchers access to computational resources with over thirty times the capacity of Britain’s current largest publicly available AI computing tools.
These supercomputers, set to be operational from the summer of the next year, will serve multiple critical purposes, including analyzing advanced AI models to test their safety features. Additionally, they will drive innovation in areas such as drug discovery and clean energy.
The Bristol-based supercomputer, known as “Isambard-AI,” will feature 5,000 advanced AI chips from Nvidia within a system built by Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Meanwhile, the Cambridge-based supercomputer, named “Dawn,” is a collaborative project with Dell and UK-based SME StackHPC. It will be powered by more than 1,000 Intel chips.
The development of these supercomputers and the increased funding represent the UK’s commitment to maintaining its position at the forefront of AI research and innovation while ensuring that AI technologies are developed with safety and responsibility in mind.
These investments will enable British scientists and researchers to harness the full potential of AI while addressing critical challenges, ultimately contributing to advancements in various sectors and the well-being of society as a whole.
The Bletchley Declaration by Countries Attending the AI Safety Summit, 1-2 November says AI should be designed, developed, deployed, and used, in a manner that is safe, in such a way as to be human-centric, trustworthy and responsible.