International collaboration GIMPS announced the discovery of a new largest known Prime number.
Participants in GIMPS (Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search) project volunteer computing on the search for Mersenne primes confirmed the discovery of a new very large Prime number. Allow it is impossible, in decimal notation it consists of 23 249 425 characters; in the book, recording that number would be about seven thousand pages.
Number, the designation M77232917 represents a power of two minus 1; the exponent is equal to 77 232 917. The previous largest known Prime number, discovered in January 2016, had a million characters shorter.
M77232917 belongs to the set of Mersenne numbers (Mn =2n−1, where M and n are primes), named after French mathematician of the XVII century Marina Mersenne. Like all primes, the Mersenne number evenly divisible only by themselves and one. Newfound number was 50-m account proven Mersenne number.
Chris Caldwell (Chris Caldwell), one of the leaders of the project GIMPS, surprised that the new record high Prime number was found so soon. “Typically, to look for Prime numbers is like finding dead cats on the road: they are rare, and you don’t expect to find a new one immediately after the previous one”, — he explained to British newspaper The Guardian.
The project GIMPS uses the computing resources of the computers of volunteers from all over the world to look for large Prime numbers. Tuesday, December 26, computer the 51-year-old electrician from Tennessee Jonathan pace, completing a six-day marathon of calculations that found the number of candidate; a few more days left to confirm that M77232917 meets the definition of a Prime number. For confirmation of the result, different computers have gone from 34 to 82 hours. This is the first Prime number that is calculated on the computer pace in 14 years of participation in the project; for his discovery of the owner of the computer will receive the reward of three thousand dollars.
Other participants of the project carries more: for example, Curtis Cooper, a mathematician at the University of Missouri, found the biggest Prime number four times, the last time in 2016. Previous the 14 largest Prime numbers were also found by GIMPS project participants.