View Full Version : IBM building most powerful computer in history to unravel origin of the universe

04-02-2012, 09:08 PM

IBM is designing a computer which will digest twice as much information every day as the entire internet, sifting through radio waves from space in an effort to unravel the origin of the universe.

The machine will be attached to a 1,900 square mile array of telescope antenna, and will be built to 'suck in' in radio telescope data which will 'see' 13 billion years into the past, back to the dawn of the universe and the Big Bang.

The machine will be millions of times more powerful than the fastest PCs today - and will deal with 100 times more information than the output of the Large Hadron Collider.

Ton Engbersen of IBM resarch says, 'If you take the current global daily Internet traffic and multiply it by two, you are in the range of the data set that the Square Kilometre Array radio telescope will be collecting every day.'

Upon completion in 2024, the telescope will be used to explore evolving galaxies, dark matter and even the very origins of the universe dating back more than 13 billion years.

This extremely powerful survey telescope will have millions of antennas to collect radio signals, forming a collection area equivalent to one square kilometre but spanning a huge surface area - approximately the width of the continental United States.

As yet, a location for it hasnít been decided, but Southern Africa and Australia are both n the reckoning.

They all offer areas with ideal conditions for telescopes, which must be well clear of electronic interference, such as that generated by mobile phones.

Itís hoped that construction will begin in 2016, with the dishes coming online eight years later.

04-02-2012, 10:56 PM
Awesome stuff. It's a great time to be alive.

04-04-2012, 01:21 AM
Well...that's just incredible.