CERN Blasts Intel Chip


Staff member
Mar 3, 2018
Think you're hard on your hardware? ESA scientists definitely have you beat. The researchers took one of Intel's Myriad 2 "AI" systems to CERN, and blasted it with heavy ions from the 7 kilometer-long particle accelerator. Calling this a "radiation" test is almost a misnomer, as typical radiation sources on Earth's surface don't produce ions as massive, or as fast, as the ones produced by CERN's particle accelerator. Still, this is definitely not a test you'd want to watch in-person. The experiment was conducted in an underground "cave" surrounded by concrete, and scientists had to leave the room before firing the beam.

Check out a video of the test here.

Like all candidate hardware to be flown in space, it first needs to be tested against radiation: space is riddled with charged particles from the Sun and further out in the cosmos. CERN provided the most intense beam of ultra-high-energy heavy ions available - short of travelling into orbit. This was made possible under CERN's R2E (Radiation to Electronics) project and in anticipation of a collaboration between CERN and ESA on matters of radiation environments, technologies and facilities. This collaboration will help explore the potential of CERN technologies and facilities for aerospace applications. CERN has also been collaborating with Intel, through a public-private partnership known as CERN openlab, since 2001. ESA put chips in a path of an experimental beamline fed by the SPS, CERN's second largest accelerator, which is located in a circular tunnel nearly 7 km in circumference. The heavy ions from the SPS have a high penetration capability, thus enabling the in-depth test of complex packaged electronic systems, very difficult to test in other irradiation facilities.
A "vpu". I remember amd using that phrase years back and it never caught on.
Aren't those the same kind of helmets they put on retarded adults so they won't bump their head?

Just what I fantasized about integrating into my uniform while serving in the nuclear submarine, where all the energetic radiation particles made stuff reach out and hit my head.