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Beginning in the 1970s, computers played a role in nuclear science that developed from relatively minor to significant. Before this time, computers were used for calculations to develop and refine theories in nuclear science. As computers moved to being interfaced with detectors and accelerators, they became inseparable from the experiment. Indeed, the design of detectors for large experiments includes the integration of computer systems into each detector element. Computers are still used to calculate predictions of experiments based on various theories. Only the most powerful computer systems can generate simulations of the expected data from today’s giant experiments. Similarly, only the most powerful computers can process the data that come from these experiments.

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