Yunker Lecture
Thursday, March 2, 2000 - 16:00
Event Speaker: 
Arthur J. Freeman, Morrison Professor of Physics, Northwestern University
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The Ages of Civilization have been defined by the particular new materials that have been mastered. More than ever, advances in materials are driving far reaching developments in all aspects of our society. It is now widely recognized that computational modeling and simulation are spearheading the unfolding of a new scientific revolution brought about by (i) the dramatic advances in condensed matter theory, especially electronic structure theory (now formally acknowledged with the award of a Nobel Prize for density functional theory to Walter Kohn in 1998), and (ii) their successful application to real materials problems made possible by utilizing the continued explosive growth of computer power. We will demonstrate how the well recognized goal driving computation physics - simulations of ever-increasing complexity on more and more realistic models - has been brought into greater focus with the introduction of massively parallel computer platforms. These simulations of now serve to fill the increasingly urgent demands of scientists and engineers. Some examples are presented to demonstrate the power of this advanced methodology for treating the structural, electronic, magnetic, optical and mechanical properties of real life