5-state busy beaver winner

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The 5-state busy beaver champion (and winner!) is: 1RB1LC_1RC1RB_1RD0LE_1LA1LD_1RZ0LA (bbch). It was found by Heiner Marxen and Jürgen Buntrock in 1989[1]. The machine halts after 47,176,870 steps and with 4098 1's on the tape, showing that and .


This machine repeatedly applies the following map, starting with [2]:

which can alternatively be written as[3]:

The full orbit from is:


  1. H. Marxen and J. Buntrock. Attacking the Busy Beaver 5. Bulletin of the EATCS, 40, pages 247-251, February 1990. https://turbotm.de/~heiner/BB/mabu90.html
  2. Aaronson, S. (2020). The Busy Beaver Frontier. Page 10-11. https://www.scottaaronson.com/papers/bb.pdf
  3. Pascal Michel. Behavior of busy beavers.https://bbchallenge.org/~pascal.michel/beh#tm52a