A professor at the University of Massachusetts wasn't just goofing off when he started hooking up one Playstation 3 system after another.
Dr. Gaurav Khanna, an astrophysicist working at the university's Dartmouth campus, has been building his own supercomputer of sorts with the popular gaming console.
The professor has been renting time on supercomputers at NASA and the National Science Foundation to run highly complicated calculations on the amount of radiation emitted when a black hole swallows a star. That supercomputing time, though, doesn't come easily or cheap, Khanna said. In an average year he rents about 30,000 hours, which costs between $20,000 and $30,000, a significant chunk of his grant money.
To ease his supercomputing plight, Khanna turned to the cell chip inside the Playstation 3 (PS3). By linking eight of them together, he said he gets the same processing power as a supercomputer with 200 processors.
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