More than 250,000 PlayStation3 owners have enrolled their console in the Folding@Home project which uses it to study the shapes proteins assume which could helps to understand diseases such as Alzheimers.
So many people have signed up that the project has carried out a year’s worth of research in a month.
The Folding@Home (F@H) project uses idle machines to simulate how proteins, the building blocks of life, assume the forms that play key roles in living tissue.
A better understanding of these folded forms could help tackle disease or help manipulate or mimic these vital structures.
By harnessing thousands of idle machines to do hundreds of thousands of these smaller tasks it becomes possible to do analysis that would take years to complete on a single supercomputer.
Sony said an update to the F@H PS3 program would boost speeds and make it easier to see who else was participating.
Reference for posting: http://news.bbc.co.uk