New Campus Supercomputer Simulates Stellar Migration

Aug 04, 2013

UW-Astronomy postdoc Carlos Vera-Ciro and Assistant Professor Elena D'Onghia have just completed the first massively parallel scientific simulation at the new UW-Madison supercomputer. The so-called N-body simulation of the Galctic disk aims to better understand the structure, evolution, and the dynamics of the stellar disk in our Galaxy. The simulation followed the motion of 100 million particles under the action of gravity and run on 512 cores on the high performance computing (HPC) cluster offered by the Center for High Throughput Computing (CHTC) and sponsored by the Advanced Computing Infrastructure (ACI). The simulation will give new insights to investigate many aspects of the stellar disk evolution, including the currently popular claim that stars such as our Sun can radically migrate from their birthplaces due to the action of time-variable spiral arms.

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