August 2018   |   Materials Science

Current developments

Supercomputing offers path for designing electricity-producing layered materials.

Astrophysics
July 2018

Galactic-wind whisperers

UC Santa Cruz and Princeton University team simulates galactic winds on the DOE’s Titan supercomputer.

Applied Mathematics, New Faces
July 2018

Structural analysis

Berkeley researcher calculates molecules’ electronic structures, hoping to hasten development of new materials, designer drugs and other applications.

Biofuels, Renewables
June 2018

Cellular energy crisis

An Arizona State University scientist mines supercomputer simulations of protein dynamics for biological energy-conversion principles.

Science Highlights

July 2018

Predicting magnetic explosions

Supercomputer simulations and theoretical analysis shed new light on when and how fast reconnection occurs.

Solar flares, coronal mass ejections and gamma-ray bursts are among the universe’s many explosive events involving ionized gas, called plasma, that are associated with magnetic reconnection. Reconnection breaks magnetic field lines and turns magnetic potential energy into kinetic energy of charged particles in the plasma. This energy conversion also causes what physicists call “sawtooth crashes” in tokamaks that are potentially damaging to electricity-producing fusion devices. Scientists may have found the trigger for these explosive events and, using supercomputer simulations, can predict when and under what conditions the events will occur.

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