UKRI supports the next wave of UK AI infrastructure investment

Survey will help to inform UKRI and DSIT of potential hosts for large-scale artificial intelligence (AI) compute systems.

As noted in the Chancellors 2023 Autumn Statement “the government will be investing a further £500 million in compute for AI over the next two financial years”. This builds on the £300 million for the first phase of the new AI Research Resource.

The exact nature and specification of the government investment is still under development.

For the purpose of this exercise, we are seeking to identify organisations with the ability to host or operate large-scale compute systems for AI applications, comprising at least 1,000 graphics processing units or equivalent AI-optimised compute architecture. They should also be capable of being delivered in the planned timescales.

Help us understand demand

The survey has been designed to help inform UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the Department of Science and Technology (DSIT) of interested parties. It will allow us to capture the identities of organisations that may wish to host or manage future large-scale facilities.

Current timing (these dates are only indicative at this stage)

As noted in the Autumn Statement, the funding for these activities is in the 2024 to 2025 and 2025 to 2026 financial year. Therefore, we will be conducting activities at pace to deliver to this timetable:

  • December 2023: initial engagement with potential hosts
  • late January 2024: likely launch of any site selection process
  • early March 2024: panel selection process

Details of the panel and selection criteria will be confirmed in the new year. Bids for host sites will be UK only.

If you are interested in being informed about this activity, fill in the online survey form by close of play 8 January 2024.

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