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Wilfrid Laurier University Faculty of Science
July 25, 2014
 
 
Canadian Excellence

Dr. Marek Wartak, Laurier's University Research Professor for 2005-2006
Dr. Marek Wartak, Laurier's University Research Professor for 2005-2006

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Physics & Computer Science

Physics & Computer Science Faculty receive SHARCNET Fellowships

Jun 13/07

One of SHARCNET's key objectives is to recruit and support research personnel who utilize high performance computing. The Fellowships Program provides funding for postdocs, students, and distinguished visitors. Fellowships are awarded via a grant competition process administered by SHARCNET.

Physics & Computer Science faculty were very successful in the recent SHARCNET grant competition. 

  • Dr. Marek Wartak received $26,000 to support a graduate student. Dr. Wartak and his student will use computational photonics to design and model low-dimensional devices operating in atomic scale (nano-systems). Examples include quantum dot based semiconductor lasers which consist of regular structures (dots) with typical dimensions within the range of 100-1000 Angstroms. In order to deal with the problems associated with nano scale, Dr. Wartak proposes a new approach based on the so-called Quantum Boltzmann Equation (QBE) formalism combined with the density functional method. This combined scheme allows him to use a first-principles quantum-mechanical description for these structures. He plans to apply the approach to study transport properties in quantum well semiconductor lasers and to investigate quantum dots. As compared to widely used classical approach based on the semiconductor drift-diffusion models, this approach will provide much more predictive power and also substantially reduce input parameters.
  • Dr. Ilias Kotsireas received an undergraduate fellowship to investigate dendroid (tree-based) algorithms to study properties of various types of sequences with zero periodic and non-periodic autocorrelation function. These algorithms exhibit linear scaling and in some cases they have aleardy been executed in parallel using MPI with as many as 800 processors. The interest in sequences of this kind, stems from numerous constructions in Combinatorial Design Theory.
  • Dr. Angèle Hamel received an undergraduate fellowship to investigate the two related artificial intelligence problems of robot search and parallel processors working on problem instances. In each case the work has to be scheduled in advance without knowledge of the algorithm finish time. The project involves finding optimal online algorithms for these applications.
  • Dr. Shohini Ghose received an undergraduate fellowship to study the dynamics of cold atoms interacting with lasers and magnetic fields. The atomic ensemble can exhibit classical chaotic behaviour, characterized by exponential sensitivity of the dynamics to small changes in initial conditions. The project focuses on exploring the fundamental connections between the laws of quantum mechanics governing the microscopic world of atoms and our macroscopic world described by classical Newtonian mechanics that can lead to chaos. Understanding quantum-classical correspondence has gained new relevance in the emerging field of quantum information science, which seeks to exploit quantum systems for computing and communication applications.

The undergraduate fellowships, worth $7,000, support undergraduate students during a summer or co-op workterm and demonstrates the department's commitment to involve bright undergraduate students in research programs.

SHARCNET awarded $525,312 over two years for 33 new Fellowships for visitors, graduate, undergraduate and post doctoral students. With over $2.5 million in funding requests from 120 applications, this was a particularly competitive round.

Laurier is a founding member of SHARCNET (www.sharcnet.ca), a consortium of universities and colleges operating a network of high-performance compute clusters in south western, central and northern Ontario.

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