Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

PS3GRID Live: with a pen drive we can carry out computational biomedical calculations on our Playstation 3

16.11.2007
Everyone can contribute to advances in biomedical research by contributing the calculative ability of our Playstation 3 to scientists. It's as easy as inserting a pen drive into the console and restarting it.

Researchers at the Research Unit on Biomedical Informatics (GRIB) at the Instituto Municipal de Investigación Médica (IMIM) and the Universidad Pompeu Fabra (UPF) in Barcelona, have invented a surprising and revolutionary computational initiative, the platform www.ps3grid.net within the PS3GRID project, will allow those interested in participating to put their own videogame console at the disposal of high-level international science.

In only a few seconds using a 1 GB pen drive, we can load Linux Live operating system in the Playstation3 and the PS3GRID software. The Playstation 3 will be connected to the PS3GRID server, this will allow you to unload the job to be completed (the scientific calculations in which you will participate). Molecular calculations will be carried out 16 times faster than with a normal PC. To return to the normal Playstation 3 game activity, just restart the console again. At first, the participation system was more complicated, but recently, by using the pen drive as a main support, it has sought to simplify the process for everyone who is interested in collaborating.

The project is coordinated by Gianni De Fabritiis, researcher at the Research Unit on Biomedical Informatics (GRIB) at the IMIM-UPF and the Department of Experimental and Health Sciences at the UPF, with the collaboration of Matt Harvey, researcher at the Imperial College in London, as well as Jordi Villà and Giovanni Giupponi, also researchers at the Computational Biochemical and Biophysics lab at GRIB–IMIM/UPF.

According to researchers, this is possible thanks to the use of the powerful processor Cell, that includes the recently commercialised PlayStation3, and the software CellMD (www.acellera.com/cellmd) with the ability to function at a processing speed greater than that of 16 conventional computers. De Fabritiis comments that "the combined computational force of all the PS3s reaches the features of a powerful supercomputer, given that at this time there are 3 million PS3s in the world". The researcher added that “the calculation capacity of 100 consoles would equal thousands of conventional computers”.

The simulation of the behaviour of microscopic biomolecules is of enormous difficulty when designing algorithms and architecture analysis, even for the most modern computers. The elemental physics behind enzymatic reactions, the tertiary structure of proteins or the conductivity of ions through biological membranes, among many other biological processes, is just beginning to be understood. Therefore, the capacity to calculate is essential to resolving the operation of high-complexity biological systems.

This initiative will allow society to contribute and to be, along with this group of researchers, a participant in the exciting world of basic biomedical research. Likewise, with the goal of contributing to the progress of science, the group of scientists at the GRIB-IMIM/UPF has made the use of this technology available to biomedical researchers all over the world to carry out calculations much faster than can be done with conventional computers. To participate, contact GRIB directly.

HOW TO JOIN THE PROJECT

The project has already been under way for some months, though it would be interesting to incorporate as many people as possible to increase the calculation capacity. At the moment, the group of researchers count some 130 machines connected, all of which are located outside Spain. Anyone interested in donating part of the computational time of their Playstation 3 to science can simply download the program onto a 1 GB or more pen drive from the website http://www.ps3grid.net/liveand insert it into their Playstation 3.

Marta Calsina | alfa
Further information:
http://nemo.imim.es/grib

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Stable magnetic bit of three atoms
21.09.2017 | Sonderforschungsbereich 668

nachricht Drones can almost see in the dark
20.09.2017 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity

22.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Penn first in world to treat patient with new radiation technology

22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering

Calculating quietness

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>