Announced on Monday, Fujitsu has provided the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) with a new supercomputer system to predict the occurrence of linear rainbands, which can lead to disasters like landslides and flooding.
The JMA will begin operating the new system on Wednesday, and it will support the agency’s efforts to offer more accurate and timely forecasts, ultimately improving preparedness for heavy rain events and providing earlier warnings in the event of disasters.
Fujitsu is strongly committed to realizing a safer, more secure, and resilient society through disaster prevention and mitigation. However, weather-related disasters, including landslides and floods caused by sudden heavy rainfalls, present increasingly severe risks in many regions worldwide.
With its subtropical climate, Japan is particularly prone to this risk and frequently faces torrential rains, which often pose a severe threat to human life and material assets.
Linear rainbands, a weather phenomenon that can occur when cumulonimbus clouds slowly move or remain for several hours over the same area, often trigger heavy rains. An early prediction of the occurrence of linear rainbands is essential in preventing and mitigating rain-related disasters.
To address this issue, the JMA introduced a new supercomputer system based on the Fujitsu Supercomputer Primeehpc FX1000, which delivers high performance and reliability to improve the accuracy of its linear rainband forecasting. In addition, the JMA has been developing linear rainband forecasting technology since June 2022 using supercomputer Fugaku and plans to leverage the results in developing the new system.
The new supercomputer system consists of 24 racks, 12 racks each for the primary and sub plans, and reaches a theoretical peak performance of about 31.1 PFLOPS. Fujitsu anticipates this system will rank as one of the world’s top 50 supercomputers under the global “TOP 500” ranking. The storage system consists of high-speed storage with a total capacity of 42.3 petabytes.
The new system will be installed at a data center in Fujitsu, equipped with safeguard mechanisms against various disasters, including earthquakes and flooding, to support business continuity through stable operational management around the clock.
With the new system, Fujitsu aims to help the JMA provide more accurate and rapid forecasts. This enables authorities to improve preparedness for heavy rain events and offer earlier warnings in case of disasters.
Ultimately, this system will contribute to realizing a safer, more secure, and resilient society through disaster prevention and mitigation.