Computer Science

Biocomputers Are Powered By Proteins, And Could Blow Supercomputers Away

Our editors delve into Curiosity's top stories every day on a podcast that's shorter than your commute. Click here to listen and learn — in just a few minutes!

In the next decade, biocomputers may leave supercomputers (and even quantum computers!) in the dust. These computers use biological molecules to process multiple commands at once, which makes them "parallel" computers as opposed to classical ones. A biocomputer model created in 2016, for example, is powered by ATP, and relies on protein filaments to navigate miniscule pathways and produce solutions. Biocomputers promise to be cheaper, faster, greener, and smaller than even the most advanced supercomputers that exist today.

Share the knowledge!

Key Facts In This Video

  1. Parallel computers can solve many problems at the same time, as opposed to classical computers that can only tackle one command at once. 01:29

  2. A biocomputer model proposed in 2016 uses less than 1% of the energy used by current electronic transistors. 03:05

  3. In 2016, researchers estimated that biocomputers are about a decade away from being produced for practical use. 05:25

Written by Curiosity Staff April 4, 2016

Curiosity uses cookies to improve site performance, for analytics and for advertising. By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies, our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.