Swiss Scientists Calculate Pi To A Record-Breaking 62.8 Trillion Decimals!

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Swiss researchers recently calculated pI to its first 62.8 trillion decimal places
(Credit: J.Gabás Esteban/CC0/Pixabay)

Even those that do not particularly care for math will agree that pi, or “π," is fascinating. The numerical constant — defined as the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter— is recognized by most as 3.14. However, Pi is an irrational number. This means it can't be written as a fraction. Instead, it is infinitely long and never forms a repeating pattern. While individuals attempt to break records by memorizing pi's decimal points, scientists strive to find its most accurate value using new algorithms and powerful computers.

On August 5, 2021, researchers from the University of Applied Sciences of the Grisons in Switzerland announced that they had set a new world record by calculating the famous number to its first 62.8 trillion decimal places! This is over 12 trillion more decimal places than the current record of 50 trillion set by Timothy Mullican in 2020. It is twice the previous record of 31.4 trillion set by Google in 2019.

Knowing more digits of pi isn't particularly important for mathematics . However, calculating pi values at a faster and most exact rate is crucial for research advancement. Perfecting the computation of the irrational number helps create computer software that works faster and more efficiently, benefitting fields from weather forecasting to COVID-19 data modeling.

The Swiss team's pi computation, which took 108 days and nine hours, was about 3.5 times faster than the eight months it took Mullican. The increase in supercomputing performance in just 18 months is even more impressive given that it had an additional 12 trillion decimal places.

New algorithms and supercomputers have allowed mathematicians to dramatically increase the number of known pi decimal digits (Credit: Nageh, CC BY-SA-3.0/Wikimedia Commons)

The Swiss scientists have no plans to calculate pi’s infinite digits any further. However, they fully expect other scientists to surpass their record within a short time. Team leader Thomas Keller says, "Looking at the previous pace of record-setting, I anticipate the next successful record-breaking attempt any time in the space of the next two years."

Resources: thenextweb.com,newatlas.com,livescience.com

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62 Comments
  • sapphire_wolf
    sapphire_wolfabout 11 hours
    Fascinating, who knows what else scientists will discover in the future!
    • booyou678
      booyou6784 days
      3.14159 this is pi followed by 2653589 now were on a spe that all I remember
      • 838423
        8384232 days
        I remember that audio now
      • bkraccoon
        bkraccoon7 days
        I bet that would take 3.1415926535 tons of paper to write out lol
        • izaac123
          izaac12310 days
          i would want to see the whole number of pi written on paper😁
          • izaac123
            izaac12310 days
            this is so cool
            • lola_1234
              lola_123412 days
              I want to see this written out!😁
              • soccerfan34
                Million, Billion. I get that, but 62.8!?!? WOW!
                • animereina2021
                  Just imagine that they tried putting 62.8 of the pi on here....😅 Just a thought...
                  • cheesesavior
                    My teachers are not gonna make me learn this. We have too much on our hands!!
                    • bkraccoon
                      bkraccoon4 days
                      It’s only 62.8 trillion digits... you’ll be fine!
                    • c4t-c4t
                      c4t-c4t15 days
                      62.8 trillion. That is a LOT:😳😳😳