Engraved illustration of the last hour of Archimedes. Here we see him sitting at a table, drawing symbols on the floor. He was interrupted by the entry of a soldier with a sword and shield through the door.

Antikythera mechanism: Ancient celestial tracking device found in shipwreck near Greece

The Antikythera mechanism is an ancient shoebox-sized device sometimes called the world’s oldest computer because of its ability to perform astronomical calculations.

The remains of the mechanism were discovered by sponge divers near the Greek island of Antikythera in 1901 and are now kept in the National Archaeological Museum in Athens.Only 82 fragments (about one-third of the original mechanism) survive today, the researchers wrote in a study published in the journal in 2021. Scientific Reports (opens in new tab). It was built about 2200 years ago.

What does the Antikythera mechanism do?

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