5G and HPC for Climate Neutrality


5G connectivity, coupled with high-performance computing (HPC) technologies, is expected to enable the reduction of global carbon emissions with over 1.7 billion tonnes by 2030 – which is equivalent of approximately half of the EU’s (EU28) total carbon emissions in 2019. The combined power of 5G and HPC has the potential to accelerate the reduction of carbon emissions for telecommunications, the energy sector and other key stakeholders in industry. 

In December 2020, Luxembourg adopted its climate law, introducing the objectives of reducing carbon emissions by 55% by 2030 and becoming climate neutral by 2050.

HPC opens a wealth of opportunities to companies to turn massive amounts of data into actionable insights. One example is the many modern smart devices capable of automatically regulating actions according to different real-time conditions. These could be, for instance, smart heating ruled by artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms trained to optimise heat consumption according to changing temperatures and house occupation, or AI-based applications that help drivers optimise their choice of roads according to real-time traffic conditions. To capture the changes and react fast enough to optimise actions as dictated by the algorithms, 5G is a necessary piece of the puzzle.  

The green brain  

HPC uses parallel data processing to improve computing performance when running long and complex calculations, such as large-scale simulations or the training of artificial intelligence algorithms. Running the same calculations on an ordinary computer could take days, weeks or even months. Some  complex calculations are not even possible without HPC.  

At its core, HPC can be likened to a big brain that helps process large amounts of data. The 5G network can be seen as the nervous system that allows information to circulate rapidly to the connected “body”. In this analogy, the recent developments in HPC and the 5G revolution mean that we will have access to larger brains and faster nervous systems. The use of HPC makes it possible to process data much faster and gain valuable knowledge that helps determine the next best move. Thanks to the rapid nervous system (5G), the knowledge is continuously transmitted back to the body and put into practice. 

The fast nervous system 

These technologies interconnect, continuously receiving and/or sending data. The speed, capacity and reliability of 5G connectivity makes it ideally suited for the internet of things (IoT) and smart devices that require massive data transfers. By making immediate adaptations and optimisation of processes possible, these smart devices will underpin efficiencies and reduce emissions in many sectors. IoT – ruled by AI algorithms – will support emission reductions across key sectors such as energy (and other utilities), transport, manufacturing and agriculture.  

Global standards for 5G mean that it is more efficient than 4G and consumes less power to transmit even larger quantities of data. One example is that according to Columbia Climate School, while one kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity is required to download 300 high-definition movies using 4G, the same quantity of electricity is enough to download 5,000 ultra-high-definition movies over the 5G network.  

While IoT devices can function using many different types of connectivity, the speed and reliability of 5G means more can be done with IoT technology. Energy production and use will be better monitored and planned. Transport infrastructures will be smarter and facilitate cleaner, shorter journeys. Manufacturing production processes will be less wasteful. Agricultural practices will minimise their negative environmental impact. 

Bringing all together 

5G will increase the flow of data: more data will be collected, making up larger datasets on which to train AI algorithms. As the datasets used for training grow, models become even more accurate. 

The downside is that training times will become even longer and more difficult for companies to handle. However, Luxembourg’s business-oriented HPC MeluXina, inaugurated in June 2021 and 100% powered by renewable hydroelectric power, is a real game changer. 65% of MeluXina’s capacity is reserved for use by the private sector, and its modular design has been created to suit different business needs. This opens the door for any company in Luxembourg to benefit from the combination of 5G and HPC in order to increase its efficiency and reduce its greenhouse footprint. 


Get in touch with the Luxembourg competence centre in HPC to discover the benefits of the MeluXina supercomputer for your business. A team of business-oriented experts is in charge of providing a smooth and easy on-boarding process to MeluXina and helping even first-time users get the best results and ensure cost optimisation.  

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