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Researchers in Missouri find largest prime number ever

By Matt Sepic, KWMU


St. Louis, MO – You might remember from grade school math that a prime number is an integer that is only divisible by one and itself (2, 3, 5, 7, etc.)

Researchers at Central Missouri State University in Warrensburg announced this week they've discovered the world's largest prime number found to date. It's a huge number - more than 9 million digits long.

Professors Curtis Cooper and Steven Boone are credited with the discovery. They did it with the help of thousands of computers linked together over the internet running special software.

Boone tells KWMUs Matt Sepic the number they found is actually a Mersenne prime, an even more elusive type of number.