When fully operational, the system, which will be deployed on the university's Belknap campus, is expected to rank among the 500 most powerful supercomputers in the world.
UofL will use the computer to help solve complex research problems in areas like cancer research, materials science, atmospheric modelling, visualisation and bioinformatics.
The supercomputer, nicknamed the Cardinal Research Cluster (CRC), has a peak speed of more than 25 teraflops (trillion calculations per second), roughly 1,100 times faster than today's average desktop computer.
UofL's Information Technology team and IBM technicians expect it to be in full operation by late March.
"As a premier metropolitan research university, it's important that we have the best support for our faculty, students and staff," said UofL president James Ramsey.
"We have phenomenal research taking place here in health sciences and other areas. This supercomputer will help us take our research to the next level."