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Date: Fri Jan 13 19:51:00 2006
Subject: 06.03.06 37th IFF Spring School , Computational Methods in Condensed Matter Physics, Jlich . Germany
37th IFF Spring School
Computational Methods in Condensed Matter Physics

March 6 - 17, 2006 . Jlich . Germany

The IFF Spring School 2006 will address modern computational approaches 
to condensed matter physics at a graduate student level. Introductory 
lectures will build the basis for the understanding of the major theoretical 
methods and the phenomena they are meant to describe. More advanced lectures 
will address practical aspects of the methods and demonstrate how computer 
simulations contribute to our understanding of physics. Highlighting 
exemplary applications will lead the audience from the basic numerical 
methods to the frontiers of current research. 

The topics of the lectures cover:

    * Simulations of Quantum Systems
    * Density Functional Theory
    * Correlated Electrons
    * Quantum Computing
    * Complex Materials
    * Supercomputing
    * Mesoscopic Hydrodynamics
    * Monte Carlo Simulations
    * Biophysics
    * Soft Matter
    * Pattern Formation
    * Friction & Fracture


During the last decades we have witnessed dramatic advances in the 
simulation of physical systems on the computer. This is partly due to an 
impressive growth in computer power. Equally or even more important, 
however, has been the outstanding progress in the development of new 
theoretical concepts and computational methods: In the simulation of 
condensed matter systems, the main challenge is to find models, which 
capture the essential physics of the real material, while still being 
susceptible to an efficient treatment on a computer.

As a result, we are now seeing more and more areas of condensed matter 
physics, where computer simulations achieve predictive power. Hence, they 
are becoming increasingly important in identifying or designing new 
materials with fascinating and advantageous properties. Thus computer 
simulations are now an essential tool in nanoscience, materials science, 
chemistry, and even biology.

The important challenges in these fields are:

    * Many characteristic properties of transition-metal oxides, 
      nanostructures, and organic crystals are due to the strong 
      repulsion between the electrons. An important focus of current 
      research is the development of new methods for an efficient 
      simulation of this quantum mechanical many-body problem.

    * In Soft Matter Science - which studies the behavior of polymer 
      solutions and melts, membranes, colloidal suspensions, and 
      biological macromolecules - simulation methods have to be 
      developed which bridge the large length- and time-scale gap 
      between the atomistic scale of the solvent molecules and the 
      mesoscopic scale of the embedded macromolecules.

    * A similar problem occurs in the investigation of macroscopic 
      properties. The elementary processes often happen on the atomic 
      scale, which is separated by many orders of magnitude from the 
      macroscopic lengths and times of day-to-day experience, as in 
      solidification patterns of high-performance materials or 
      earthquake rupture. Multi-scale simulation techniques have to 
      be developed in order to tackle this problem.

    * The basic idea of quantum computing is to use linear operations 
      in Hilbert space to perform massively parallel calculations. 
      While no quantum computer of any substantial size has yet been 
      built, quantum computing holds the promise of a qualitatively 
      new way of simulating physical systems.
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