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Please join us for a luncheon on October 20 featuring

MLK Visiting Professor of Chemistry Steven Richardson

Using Supercomputers to Design Novel Quantum Materials

Wednesday, October 12, 11:45am-1pm in MIT Room 6-104 (Chipman Room)

Cell phones and supercomputers are wonderful examples of how modern technology plays an important role in our daily lives. An alien visitor from another galaxy need only ride the Red Line on the T during rush hour to understand how integral cell phones are to human existence on this planet! While everyone appreciates the utility of a PC or Mac to get through the technical chores of the day, it is really the supercomputer that will us help solve the so-called grand challenges of science, engineering, and medicine, such as designing new clinical drugs, predicting novel materials from first-principles, and describing how our climate changes. While both cell phones and supercomputers rely on semiconductor chips made from the element silicon for their speed and memory, many in the semiconductor industry feel that we are reaching a limit as to how much longer we can exploit silicon as our major workhorse for chip design.

 It is clear that we are going to need new materials to replace silicon for future advances in communications and supercomputing. Graphene is one example of these so-called “quantum materials” which are exciting researchers around the world as a possible replacement for silicon. There are other possible candidate materials but to describe how they work and to design new ones, we must use the rules of quantum mechanics which tell us how atoms and molecules behave at the microscopic level. We are also going to require supercomputers which are much faster than the MacBook Pro running macOS Sierra 10.12, the latest operating system for the Mac, to solve these rules and provide accurate and useful results for our experimental friends.

 In this public lecture we will give our audience a taste of the excitement of our research where we perform experiments, not in the laboratory, but on the supercomputer to design and model a new class of quantum materials for important future applications in the semiconductor chip industry.

 If you are able to attend, please reply to Shauna Bush-Fenty (sfenty@mit.edu) with any dietary restrictions, preferences or other needs.

Events are open to all community members. We welcome people of every identity, ability/disability, and background, and will strive to meet all needs for full participation.