The GRAPE (short for GRAvity PipE) family of special-purpose hardware was designed and built by a group of astrophysicists at the University of Tokyo. Like a graphics accelerator speeding up graphics calculations on a workstation, without changing the software running on that workstation, the GRAPE acts as a Newtonian force accelerator, in the form of an attached piece of hardware. In a large-scale gravitational N-body calculation, where N is the number of particles, almost all instructions of the corresponding computer program are thus performed on a standard workstation, while only the gravitational force calculations, in innermost loop, are replaced by a function call to the special-purpose hardware. Connected to a front end workstation, a single GRAPE-6 board can run at a speed of up to 1 Teraflops. The Full GRAPE-6 configuration in Tokyo will run at 100 Teraflops.


back in 1987....89....91....


Jun Makino, Piet Hut, many others (to be filled in)


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