Swiss researchers said on Monday they had calculated the mathematical constant pi to a new world-record level of exactitude, hitting 62.8 trillion figures using a supercomputer.
“The calculation took 108 days and nine hours” using a supercomputer, the Graubünden University of Applied Sciences said in a statement.
3,1415, so lauten die ersten Ziffern der Zahl Pi. Wie die Zahlenfolge weitergeht, weiss niemand so genau wie ein Team der Fachhochschule Graubünden. Damit kehrt ein Weltrekord in die Schweiz zurück. https://t.co/KURtGZOCpk
— NZZ Wissenschaft (@NZZWissen) August 17, 2021
Its efforts were “almost twice as fast as the record Google set using its cloud in 2019, and 3.5 times as fast as the previous world record in 2020”, according to the university’s Centre for Data Analytics, Visualisation and Simulation.
Researchers are waiting for the Guinness Book of Records to certify their feat, until then revealing only the final ten digits they calculated for pi: 7817924264.
The previous world-record pi calculation had achieved 50 trillion figures. Pi represents the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter, with an infinite number of digits following the decimal point.
Researchers nevertheless continue to push calculations for the constant — whose first 10 figures are 3.141592653 — ever further using powerful computers.
The Swiss team said that the experience they built up calculating pi could be applied in other areas like “RNA analysis, simulations of fluid dynamics and textual analysis”.
Not only was the task labour intensive, but it called upon the best computing technology on offer – with more than 300 terabytes of RAM required to calculate the new more exact incarnation of pi.