Microsoft And OpenAI Plan To Create A $100 Billion Data Center To Power A 'Stargate' AI Supercomputer


The rapid adoption of generative AI technology has led to skyrocketing demands for AI data centers capable of handling more advanced tasks than traditional data centers.

This time, it's reported that OpenAI and Microsoft are working on plans for a data center project that could cost as much as $100 billion, a sum that is far greater than any data center projects available at this time.

It's around 100 times more costly than some of the biggest existing data centers, and more than triple of what Microsoft spent in 2023 for servers, buildings and other equipment.

The goal is to build a U.S.-based AI supercomputer, which they refer to as "Stargate."

Set to launch in 2028, Microsoft shall be responsible for financing the project that executives envisage will bring to life the supercomputer with millions of specialized server chips to power OpenAI’s AI.

Satya Nadella and Sam Altman
CEO of Microsoft Satya Nadella (left) and CEO of OpenAI Sam Altman (right)

"We are always planning for the next generation of infrastructure innovations needed to continue pushing the frontier of AI capability, said a Microsoft spokesperson said in an emailed statement.

The first that published the news, is The Information.

According to the report, both founder and CEO of OpenAI, Sam Altman, and Microsoft, have spread the supercomputers development across five phases.

At this time, Microsoft and the ChatGPT-maker are in the middle of the third phase of the five-phase plan, with a significant portion of the cost for the next two phases involving acquiring the needed AI chips, the report said.

For the fourth-phase supercomputer, Microsoft is working with OpenAI to launch it around 2026, the report said.

And Stargate here, is the fifth phase.

And to ensure the project runs smoothly, Microsoft plans to purchase AI chips from third-party suppliers.

Because AI chips are often sold at high prices, Microsoft also plans to develop its own chips, which can be further customized to the project's needs.

It's worth noting that the expense for the plan is tentative, and the sum is based on a person who spoke with Altman about it, and a person who has viewed some of Microsoft's initial cost estimates.

What's certain, the proposed supercomputer would be the biggest in a series of installations the companies are looking to build over the next six years, the report added.

Read: Microsoft Invests $1 Billion In OpenAI To Build 'Supercomputer AI'

A depiction of a
A depiction of a "stargate" in science-fiction

Stargate is a name that is borrowed from the term to describe a teleportation gate, or a faster-than-light travel portal, a hyperspace portal jumpgate, or a wormhole that allows users to travel anywhere around the cosmos.

In fact, it's also the title of a military science fiction media franchise.

Borrowing the name suggests how ambitious this project is.

Generative AI is advancing is absolutely breathtaking, and that it's like witnessing the rapid evolution of a digital masterpiece right before the eyes. With each passing day, it seems like there's a new breakthrough, a new innovation that pushes the boundaries of what is thought was possible.

From language models, to stunningly realistic images and videos generated by GANs (Generative Adversarial Networks), the capabilities of generative AI are expanding at an astonishing rate.

And let's not forget about the creative applications in music, art, and even virtual environments.

With all this progress, the industry is becoming so lucrative that one can't help but wonder what developments lie just around the corner.

Read: Paving The Roads To Artificial Intelligence: It's Either Us, Or Them