CMAC becomes first UK university centre to install NVIDIA DGX H100 supercomputer to drive AI for sustainable future medicines manufacturing research

05/07/2023
The new NVIDIA DGX H100 supercomputer

THE UNIVERSITY of Strathclyde’s Continuous Manufacturing and Advanced Crystallisation (CMAC) medicines manufacturing research centre has installed a new NVIDIA DGX H100 supercomputer, becoming the first university centre in the United Kingdom to have this groundbreaking platform to enable the next wave of artificial intelligence (AI) research and development.

“This investment demonstrates our commitment to drive the digital transformation of CMC (Chemistry, Manufacturing and Control) processes for medicines development and manufacture. This groundbreaking infrastructure will allow us to work with our partners to develop novel AI solutions that will help us to produce new medicines more quickly, more affordably and with greater resilience of supply.

“Also, our research must not cost the Earth and I am delighted that this investment has been made possible through our UK RPIF Net Zero pilot that allows us to continue to invest in world-class, resource- efficient digital infrastructure that will extend our capabilities and accelerate progress whilst minimising carbon emissions from our research and training activities,” said Prof Florence, Director CMAC & UK-RPIF Net Zero Pilot.

Pharmaceutical companies around the world and CMAC’s Tier 1 partners see AI as a key tool for accelerating drug development and manufacturing research, and this new platform is set to transform the way researchers at CMAC conduct new AI research.

The NVIDIA DGX H100 will allow CMAC to drive the development of transformative AI models to assist in the design and manufacture of medicines by providing an order of magnitude performance improvement compared to previous platforms.

CMAC’s medicines manufacturing research strategy is co-created with Tier 1 and 2 industry partners and this groundbreaking new capability, alongside the ongoing project collaboration with NVIDIA, their Elite Solution Partner Scan and their team of AI and immersive technology experts and data scientists, will allow us to accelerate the development of cutting-edge AI solutions. In the coming weeks CMAC will showcase applications that leverage DGX H100 as we launch our AI and machine learning grand challenges for pharmaceutical development and manufacturing.

“From novel ChatGPT-like large language models for medicines manufacturing to real-time imaging applications deployed at the edge on our advanced manufacturing process lines, NVIDIA DGX H100 will allow us to advance research challenges previously beyond accessible computational capabilities. Working collaboratively with NVIDIA’s experts and pharma partners we are in a strong position to further accelerate the impact of CMAC’s portfolio of industrial digital technology research on medicines development in the coming years,” said Prof Blair Johnston, Associate Director CMAC, Data Management and Infrastructure.

“The NVIDIA DGX H100 will enable the realisation of autonomous robotic platforms driven by hybrid AI and physics-based models to revolutionise drug development and manufacturing. Within a data-scarce field, we aim to leverage the latest breakthroughs in generative AI to empower CMAC researchers and our global industrial collaborators with unprecedented insights that lead to more agile and sustainable medicines manufacturing”, said Dr Javier Cardona, Lecturer and Strathclyde Chancellor’s Fellow, CMAC.

“With the arrival of the NVIDIA DGX H100, we are starting a new era of pharmaceutical manufacturing research. This platform will dramatically enhance our computational capabilities, enabling the solution of multiscale and multiphase models and the exploration of the massive chemical and process space at unprecedented speed. As a result, we can accelerate the pace of and streamline the manufacturing process development, and significantly reduce the time and resources it takes to develop new medicines,” said Dr Cameron Brown, Senior Lecturer, co-lead Crystallisation Classification System (CCS) Development, CMAC.

“Scan feels privileged to be working with NVIDIA and the University of Strathclyde’s CMAC facility to deliver and install the first UK-based DGX H100 solution.

Such cutting edge GPU-accelerated hardware will further their goals in CMAC, and Scan’s team will be on-hand with hardware optimisation, network configuration and data science advice, to ensure maximum utilisation of the NVIDIA DGX supercomputer continues as workloads evolve. A special thanks goes to Run: AI, who also played a role within the infrastructure rollout”, said Elan Raja, CEO Scan Computers, Scan.

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