Why you can trust us

Engadget has been testing and reviewing consumer tech since 2004. Our stories may include affiliate links; if you buy something through a link, we may earn a commission. Read more about how we evaluate products.

The Cheyenne Supercomputer is going for a fraction of its list price at auction right now

The US government is unloading the 5.34-petaflop system for far less then it paid for it.

GSA Auctions

If you've been thinking about picking up a new supercomputer but were waiting on a good price, now might be a good time to put in your bid. Right now, the US government, via GSA Auctions, is auctioning off the Cheyenne Supercomputer to the highest bidder with three days remaining. While we haven't tested this one ourselves, we assume its 145,152 CPU cores will easily out-perform our current top pick for a laptop. You also won't need to upgrade the memory anytime soon, as there's a full 313,344GB of RAM currently installed, and the storage capacity tallies up to around 36 petabytes. No need to delete files to make room for new games or other media downloads.

Grab one of the world's most powerful supercomputers for far below list price during the US Government auction. 

$28,000 at GSA Auctions

The deal was spotted by Ars Technica, who also point out that the fiber optic and CAT5/6 cabling are not included in the sale. While the price the government paid for the supercomputer has not been disclosed, it's safe to assume the cost was well into the millions, considering the price tags of other supercomputers. As of this writing, the bidding has reached $28,085, though the reserve has not yet been met. There are still three days to go and there's currently no deposit required to place a bid.

The reason for such a hefty discount (other than the fact that Cheyenne has been decommissioned) could be faulty quick disconnects causing water spray and the fact that approximately one percent of nodes have "experienced failure" and "will remain unrepaired." One other caveat to note before you start making room in your arena-sized climate-controlled garage is that shipping is not included. As GSA Auctions notes on the details page, "moving this system necessitates the engagement of a professional moving company" and that "the purchaser assumes responsibility for transferring the racks from the facility onto trucks."

But where else will you find such steep savings on a machine that can carry out 5.34 quadrillion calculations per second? Cheyenne is also surprisingly energy-efficient, consuming 25 percent less energy per computation than its predecessor, Yellowstone. The massive supercomputer helped researchers understand the rapid intensification of hurricanes, how wildfires impact air quality, and simulated years of climate functions to predict outcomes decades in advance. It should definitely provide you with enough processing power for extreme multitasking at work while handling even the most demanding games after hours.

Follow @EngadgetDeals on Twitter and subscribe to the Engadget Deals newsletter for the latest tech deals and buying advice.