New virtual laboratory for merging neutron stars

For the first time, a high-performance computer will make it possible to simulate gravitational waves, magnetic fields and neutrino physics of neutron stars simultaneously.

'Digital alchemy' to reverse-engineer new materials

In work that upends materials design, researchers have demonstrated with computer simulations that they can design a crystal and work backward to the particle shape that will self-assemble to create it.

New findings could lead to cheaper solar cells

At the atomic scale materials can show a rich palette of dynamic behaviour, which directly affects the physical properties of these materials. For many years, it has been a dream to describe these dynamics in complex materials ...

Galaxy clusters caught in a first kiss

For the first time, astronomers have found two giant clusters of galaxies that are just about to collide. This observation can be seen as a missing 'piece of the puzzle' in our understanding of the formation of structure ...

Simulating Red Sea water exchanges

Powerful computer simulations are revealing new insights into water exchanges between the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.

Benchmarks to better catch the sun

Simulations unveil efficiency targets and design rules to maximize the conversion of light into electricity using organic solar cells.

Turning up the heat on pathogenic bacteria

Pathogenic bacteria come alive at the metabolic level when they enter the warmth of the human gut, firing up genes that encode toxins and other compounds harmful to our bodies. A KAUST-led study shows how a critical bacterial ...

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Computer simulation

A computer simulation, a computer model or a computational model is a computer program, or network of computers, that attempts to simulate an abstract model of a particular system. Computer simulations have become a useful part of mathematical modeling of many natural systems in physics (computational physics), chemistry and biology, human systems in economics, psychology, and social science and in the process of engineering new technology, to gain insight into the operation of those systems, or to observe their behavior.

Computer simulations vary from computer programs that run a few minutes, to network-based groups of computers running for hours, to ongoing simulations that run for days. The scale of events being simulated by computer simulations has far exceeded anything possible (or perhaps even imaginable) using the traditional paper-and-pencil mathematical modeling: over 10 years ago, a desert-battle simulation, of one force invading another, involved the modeling of 66,239 tanks, trucks and other vehicles on simulated terrain around Kuwait, using multiple supercomputers in the DoD High Performance Computer Modernization Program; a 1-billion-atom model of material deformation (2002); a 2.64-million-atom model of the complex maker of protein in all organisms, a ribosome, in 2005; and the Blue Brain project at EPFL (Switzerland), began in May 2005, to create the first computer simulation of the entire human brain, right down to the molecular level.

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