Located in the Myhal Centre for Engineering Innovation & Entrepreneurship and established on March 14, 2018, the Fujitsu Co-Creation Research Laboratory is a new facility designed to accelerate innovative computing research, particularly Digital Annealer.
The University of Toronto, one of the top research universities in the world, along with Fujitsu, the leading Japanese information and communication technology company, have partnered to form the Fujitsu Co-Creation Research Laboratory, which will advance new algorithms and architectures for Digital Annealer and conduct research on applications related to healthcare, finance, intelligent transportation, and more.
Voices from the Fujitsu Co-Creation Research Laboratory Collaborators
Professor, Laboratory Head
Fujitsu Laboratories and I have been collaborating for nearly twenty years. Recently we have expanded the collaboration from essentially just one person to 11 faculty members with around 25 grad students and post-docs from various research fields, ranging from electrical and computer engineering to mechanical and industrial engineering, medicine, finance, and statistics. To my knowledge, the Co-Creation Lab has grown into the biggest research cluster at UofT with strong industry involvement. At the Co-Creation Lab, we have the opportunity to see DA’s progress and development first-hand and to contribute to it, as well as getting access to it ahead of other researchers. At our DA Monthly Seminars, we network and discuss ideas to find new collaborations. Currently, we are tackling a variety of issues including resource allocation in communications, radiotherapy, problems in finance, and city traffic. This collaboration is enabling us to solve these problems faster, together.
Director, Fujitsu Consulting (Canada) Inc., Advanced Computing R&D Centre
We established the Co-Creation Lab to enable world-renowned research. Our support is not just grants: we also provide access to Digital Annealer, which solves combinatorial optimization problems, along with technical expertise on research. Digital Annealer is Fujitsu’s own technology that enables users to formulate social problems with fewer mathematical restrictions and solve them more accurately and faster.
Unlike traditional joint research projects, multi-disciplinary professionals with diverse background discuss and create together here in the Co-Creation Lab. We expect brilliant professors and students to join the lab and create innovative research. To enable that, we assure that Digital Annealer keeps progressing to support your research.
Ph.D. Student, Sheikholeslami Lab
I started my work with the co-creation lab with my 4th year undergrad capstone project, where our team was tasked with designing a small Boltzmann Machine accelerator on a small FPGA. At that time, I didn’t know what the DA was but later realized that what we had built was a working, yet low-performance, “DA”. After seeing the gap in my skills, I decided to join the co-creation lab as a grad student and made it my mission to design and build solver systems to outperform what was, at that point, DA 1.0.
Since starting my research, my focus has become to extend the DA’s functionality beyond a QUBO (Quadratic Unconstrained Binary Optimization) solver. Our goal has been to take the QUB out of the DA’s QUBO solver designation. So far, I’m proud to say that we’ve developed systems that can allow the DA to natively support Integer variables (QU
BO) and various constraint types (Q UBO) that outperform both general-purpose and dedicated solvers across a wide range of benchmarks. Two letters down, one more to go!