Astrophysics Gauss Centre for Supercomputing e.V.

ASTROPHYSICS

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Jenny G. Sorce(1), Klaus Dolag(2), (1) Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam/AIP (Germany) and Centre de Recherche Astrophysique de Lyon (France), (2) Universitäts-Sternwarte, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr74do

The neighbourhood in the immediate vicinity of the Milky Way is known as the “Local Group”. It is a binary system composed of two averaged sized galaxies (the Milky Way and Andromeda) dominating a volume that is roughly ~7 Mpc in diameter. At a distance of around 15Mpc, the Virgo cluster comes into view as the main defining feature of our neighbourhood on these scales. Beyond Virgo, a number of well known and well observed clusters like Centaurus, Fornax, Hydra, Norma, Perseus and Coma dominate the night sky. This is our cosmic neighbourhood. The goal of this project is, for the first time, to perform targeted, state of the art hydro-dynamical simulations covering this special region of the universe and to compare the results with various...

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Felix Spanier(1), Anne Stockem-Novo(2), (1) Karlsruhe Institut für Technologie, Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen (Germany), (2) Ruhr-Universität Bochum (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr74se

Active galactic nuclei (AGN) are powerful emitters of photons in energy ranges from few millielectron volts (meV) to several teraelectron volts (TeV). These sources show variabilities as fast as a few minutes. It is believed that the emission originates from particles accelerated in shock waves in the jet of AGN. Observational data, however, is too sparse to constrain radiation models. Therefore, light curves (i.e. temporal data) are used to constrain models further. Using the Particle-in-Cell method to investigate shock collisions, this project aims at gaining more detailed insight into a special case of variability.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Klaus Dolag, Universitäts-Sternwarte, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr83li, pr86re

The outcome of a large set of cosmological, hydro-dynamical simulations from the project Magneticum now became made available to the general community through operating a cosmological simulation web portal. Users are able to access data products extracted from the simulations via a user-friendly web interface, browsing through visualizations of cosmological structures while guided by meta data queries helping to select galaxy clusters and galaxy groups of interest. Several services are available for the users: (I) ClusterInspect; (II) SimCut (raw data access); (III) Smac (2D maps); (IV) Phox (virtual X-ray observations, taking the specifications of various, existing and future X-ray telescopes into account.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Jenny Sorce, Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (Germany) and Centre de Recherche Astrophysique de Lyon (France)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr74je

Galaxy clusters are large reservoirs of galaxies. As such they are perfect objects of studies to unravel the mysteries of galaxy formation and evolution in dense environments. At ~50 million light-years away from Earth, the Virgo cluster, a gathering of more than a thousand galaxies, is our closest cluster-neighbour. Its proximity permits deep observations. Cosmological numerical simulations of the cluster constitute the numerical counterparts to be compared with observations to test our theoretical models. In such simulations, dark matter (nature of most of the matter in the Universe) and baryons (visible matter) follow physical laws to reproduce our closest cluster-neighbour and its galaxies in a simulated box across cosmic time.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Hans-Thomas Janka, Max-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik, Garching (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr53yi

Traditionally, numerical simulations of core-collapse supernovae have been performed with spherically symmetric initial models for the progenitor stars, because stellar evolution is computed with this restriction. Recently, however, it has been demonstrated that pre-collapse asymmetries in the convectively burning oxygen shell can have an impact on the explosion by enhancing turbulence behind the supernova shock. In this project researchers simulated the final seven minutes of oxygen burning and the subsequent collapse of a 19 solar-mass star in order to investigate the consequences of pre-collapse asymmetries for the supernova explosion.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Christoph Federrath (1), Ralf S. Klessen (2), (1) Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Australian National University (ANU), (2) Zentrum für Astronomie, Institut für Theoretische Astrophysik und Interdisziplinäres Zentrum für Wissenschaftliches Rechnen, Universität Heidelberg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr32lo

Understanding turbulent gases and fluids is critical for a wide range of terrestrial and astrophysical applications. Here we present the world's largest turbulence simulation to date. This GCS Large-Scale Project on SuperMUC consumed 45 million core hours and produced 2 PB of data. It is the first and only simulation to bridge the scales from supersonic (Mach > 1) to subsonic (Mach < 1) flow and resolves the sonic scale (where the Mach number = 1). The sonic scale is a key ingredient for star formation models and may determine the size of filamentary structures in the interstellar medium.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Joakim Rosdahl, Centre de Recherche Astrophysique de Lyon (France)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr53na

The formation of the first galaxies marked the end of the cosmological dark ages. Radiation from the first stars ionized and heated inter-galactic gas. As these ionized gas bubbles grew and percolated, the whole Universe was transformed from a dark, cold, neutral state into a hot ionized one, about a billion years after the Big Bang. The SPHINX cosmological radiation-hydrodynamics simulations of the first billion years are designed to understand the formation of the first galaxies and how they contributed to reionization via the interplay of star formation, stellar radiation, and powerful supernova explosions that disrupt galaxies and allow their radiation to escape into inter-galactic space.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Hans-Thomas Janka, Max-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik, Garching (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr62za

The "ray-by-ray" approximation is a widely used simplification of the time-dependent, six-dimensional transport of all neutrino species in core-collapse supernovae. It reduces the dimensionality of the computationally challenging problem by assuming that non-radial flux components are negligible. This leads to the solution of three-dimensional (radius-, energy-, and angle-dependent) transport equations for all angular directions of the spatial polar grid. Such a task can be extremely efficiently parallelized also on huge numbers of computing cores. In this project 3D simulations were performed to test this approximation and could demonstrate its validity.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Stefanie Walch-Gassner, I. Physikalisches Institut, Universität zu Köln

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr62su

Molecular clouds form out of the diffuse interstellar medium (ISM) within galactic disks and continuously accrete gas and interact with their surroundings as they evolve. Hence the evolution of turbulent, filamentary molecular clouds has to be modeled at the same time as the surrounding multiphase ISM. In the SILCC-ZOOM project, we simulate molecular cloud formation, the star formation within them, and their subsequent dispersal by stellar feedback on sub-parsec scales in 3D, AMR, MHD simulations with the FLASH code including self-gravity, radiative transfer, and a chemical network.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Luciano Rezzolla, Institute for Theoretical Physics, Goethe University Frankfurt (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr62do

The age of multi-messenger gravitational wave astronomy has arrived. The simultaneous detection of gravitational and electromagnetic waves from merging neutron stars has illustrated the importance of having high resolution numerical relativity simulations, performed on SuperMUC, available to disentangle the complex interplay of nuclear physics, neutrino physics, and strong field gravity. Using these simulations, it is possible to study matter at densities unreachable with terrestrial experiments and determine the origin of the heavy elements in the universe.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Tim Dietrich, Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics, Potsdam (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr48pu

The collision of two neutron stars is one of the most violent events in the Universe. The extreme conditions, with densities of about one hundred million tons per cubic centimeter and gravity hundred billion times that of Earth gravity, cannot be tested on Earth, which makes these events a perfect laboratory to study matter at extreme limits. Using advanced numerical relativity simulations, scientists study the phenomena close to the merger of the two neutron stars to extract information about the emitted gravitational wave and electromagnetic signals.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: David Hilditch and Bernd Brügmann, Theoretisch-Physikalisches Institut, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr87nu

General relativity describes the gravitational interaction as the curvature of spacetime. This involves complicated partial differential equations, and consequently extreme scenarios can be treated only by numerical simulations. In this project spacetimes close to the critical threshold of black hole formation were evolved on SuperMuc. These computations were performed using bamps, a new massively parallel code for numerical relativity. The spacetimes constructed constitute the most extreme regime imaginable - that in which cosmic censorship itself may be violated and the black hole singularity could be seen by distant observers. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Hubert Klahr, Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie, Heidelberg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: hhd19

Planetesimals are kilometre-sized planetary building blocks in the early solar system. Scientists pioneered a scenario in which turbulent concentrations of the icy and dusty material leads to sufficiently large densities in which self-gravity dominates over gas shear and tidal forces of the star. As a consequence, the material collapses spontaneously under its own weight into planetesimals. Therefore, the motion of many millions of particles in magneto-hydro-dynamically and particle driven turbulence and include the gravity among gas and particles are all simulated in one huge simulation. The goal is to link the observations of dust around young stars in a quantified way to an initial mass distribution of planetesimals.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Alfred Müller, Institut für Atom- und Molekülphysik, Universität Giessen (Germany)

HPC Platform used: Hazel Hen of HLRS

Local Project ID: PAMOP and PAMOP2

An international group of scientists leverages high-performance computing to support current and future measurements of atomic photoionization cross-sections at various synchrotron radiation facilities, ion-atom collision experiments, together with plasma, fusion and astrophysical applications. In their work they solve the Schrödinger or Dirac equation using the R-matrix or R-matrix with pseudo-states approach from first principles. Cross-sections and rates for radiative charge transfer, radiative association, and photodissociation collision processes between atoms and ions of interest for several astrophysical applications are presented.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Dylan Nelson(1) and Annalisa Pillepich(2), (1) MPA Garching (Germany), (2) MPIA Heidelberg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: Hazel Hen of HLRS

Local Project ID: GCS-dwar

Modern simulations of galaxy formation, which simultaneously follow the co-evolution of dark matter, cosmic gas, stars, and supermassive black holes, enable us to directly calculate the observable signatures that arise from the complex process of cosmic structure formation. TNG50 is an unprecedented ‘next generation’ cosmological, magneto-hydrodynamical simulation -- the third and final volume of the IllustrisTNG project. It captures spatial scales as small as ~100 parsecs, resolving the interior structure of galaxies, and incorporates a comprehensive model for galaxy formation physics.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Volker Springel, Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies, Heidelberg University, and Max-Planck Institute for Astrophysics (Germany)

HPC Platform used: Hazel Hen of HLRS

Local Project ID: GCS-ILLU

Hydrodynamical simulations of galaxy formation have now reached sufficient physical fidelity to allow detailed predictions for their formation and evolution over cosmic time. The aim of this project is to carry out a new generation of structure formation simulations, IllustrisTNG, that reach sufficient volume to make accurate predictions for clustering on cosmologically relevant scales, while at the same time being able to compute detailed galaxy morphologies, the enrichment of diffuse gas with metals, and the amplification of magnetic fields during structure growth.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Ana-Catalina Plesa, Institute of Planetary Research, Planetary Physics, German Aerospace Center/DLR, Berlin (Germany)

HPC Platform used: Hornet of HLRS

Local Project ID: MATHECO

The large amount of data returned by several space missions to the terrestrial planets has greatly improved our understanding of the similarities and differences between the innermost planets of our Solar System. Nevertheless, their interior remains poorly known since most of the data is related to surface processes. In the absence of direct data of the interior evolution of terrestrial planets, numerical simulations of mantle convection are an important mean to reconstruct the thermal and chemical history of the interior of the Earth, Moon, Mercury, Venus and Mars. In this project, run on Hornet of HLRS, researchers used the mantle convection code Gaia to model the thermal evolution of terrestrial planets and in particular the early stage...

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Ralf Klessen(1), Christoph Federrath (2), (1) Universität Heidelberg, Germany (2) Australian National University

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr48pi

Interstellar turbulence shapes the structure of the multi-phase interstellar medium (ISM) and is a key process in the formation of molecular clouds as well as the build-up of star clusters in their interior. The key ingredient for our theoretical understanding of ISM dynamics and stellar birth is the sonic scale in the turbulent cascade, which marks the transition from supersonic to subsonic turbulence and produces a break in the turbulence power spectrum. To measure this scale and study the sonic transition region in detail, scientists, for the first time, ran a simulation with the unprecedented resolution of 10,0483 grid cells.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Hans-Thomas Janka, Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics, Garching (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr48de

Recently the first three-dimensional simulations have confirmed the long-standing hypothesis that the neutrino-driven mechanism, supported by violent hydrodynamic instabilities and turbulent mass flows, can explain supernova explosions of stars with more than 8−10 solar masses. Further consolidation of this mechanism and a deeper theoretical understanding of its functioning require the exploration of a broader variety of progenitor stars and of dependences on the initial conditions prior to iron-core collapse. In this Gauss project the influence of stellar rotation, perturbations in the convective oxygen-burning layer, and of large mass-infall rates due to high core compactness in very massive progenitor stars were explored.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Wolfram Schmidt, Institut für Astrophysik, Universität Göttingen, and Hamburger Sternwarte, Universität Hamburg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr84vo

The modelling of star formation and feedback processes such as supernova explosions is a longstanding problem in numerical simulations of cosmological structure formation because the internal structure of galaxies cannot be resolved in sufficient detail even on very powerful supercomputers. For this reason, star formation and stellar feedback are treated as so-called subgrid physics. The aim of our project is to combine standard recipes for star formation in simulations on cosmological scales with a subgrid-scale model for numerically unresolved turbulence, which allows us to study the influence of turbulence on star formation and the mixing of metals expelled by supernova explosions in galaxies. It is believed that, in addition to...

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Hans-Thomas Janka, Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics, Garching (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr48ra

First self-consistent, first-principle simulations in three dimensions have provided support for the viability of the neutrino-driven mechanism as an explanation of supernova explosions of stars with more than 8−10 solar masses. While these results respresent fundamentally important progress in our understanding of how massive stars terminate their lives, the enormous complexity and computational demand of the involved neutrino physics set severe resolution limitations to current full-scale supernova models. In this project, the numerical convergence of the present simulations were investigated.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Filippo Galeazzi, Luciano Rezzolla, Institute for Theoretical Physics, Goethe University Frankfurt (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr48fa

Leveraging the HPC infrastructure of LRZ, researchers at the Goethe University in Frankfurt/Main employ a series of in-house developed cutting-edge numerical methods to simulate in full general relativity the inspiral, merger, and collapse of neutron stars. The computationally intense, fully parallel simulations incorporate relativistic hydrodynamics, nuclear finite-temperature equations of state, and an approximate treatment of neutrino emission and absorption. The results, obtained by measuring gravitational waves, can provide important information on the properties of matter at nuclear densities.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Stefan Gottlöber, Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: h009z

An international team of scientists performed a series of Constrained Simulations to study Near Field Cosmology. These high-resolution simulations allowed the astrophysicists, for the first time, to study the formation of the Local Group in the right cosmic environment. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: (1)Bernd Brügmann, (2)Tim Dietrich, (1)Friedrich-Schiller-University, Jena, (2)Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute), Potsdam-Golm (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr48pu

The recent observations of gravitational waves (GWs) marked a breakthrough and inaugurated the field of GW astronomy. To extract information from a detection, the measured signal needs to be cross-correlated with a template family. However, due to the nonlinearity of Einstein’s equations, numerical simulations have to be used to study systems with gravitational fields strong enough to emit GWs. This project focused on the simulation of systems consisting of two neutron stars and investigated the effect of the mass ratio and the influence of the spin of the individual stars.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Ulrich Hansen, Institut für Geophysik, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster (Germany)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: hms18

Researchers at the University of Münster investigated precession driven flows in planets by direct numerical simulations on the JUQUEEN cluster. Precession of the rotation axis is an often neglected driving mechanism for flows in planetary cores, a field of research were other scientists mainly focus on the influence of thermal or chemical effects. As an additional complication that moves the models closer to the physical reality, the project considered the spheroidal shape of the planet, whereas previous research has been focused on the idealized case of a perfect sphere.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Bruno Giacomazzo, University of Trento and INFN-TIFPA, Trento, Italy

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: GRSimStar

What can we learn from some of the most powerful explosions in the universe? Researchers in Italy, USA, and Japan joined forces to study, via computer simulations in general relativity, what happens when two neutron stars in a binary system finally merge. Besides black holes, neutron stars are the most compact objects ever observed. Their collisions can produce bright electromagnetic emission and strong gravitational waves. Understanding how to relate the different signals with the properties of neutron stars may allow us to understand how matter behaves in conditions so extreme that cannot be reproduced on Earth.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Yannick Bahé, Max Planck Institut for Astrophysics, Garching (Germany)

HPC Platform used: Hazel Hen of HLRS

Local Project ID: gcs-hydra

Why do galaxies that live in the enormous structures known as galaxy clusters look different from normal, isolated galaxies, like our Milky Way? To answer this question, astrophysicists have created the Hydrangea simulations, a suite of 24 high-resolution cosmological hydrodynamical simulations of galaxy clusters. Containing over 20,000 cluster galaxies in unprecedented detail and accuracy, these simulations are giving astrophysicists a powerful tool to understand how galaxies have formed and evolved in one of the most extreme environments of our Universe.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Peter Hauschildt, Hamburger Sternwarte, Universität Hamburg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: Hazel Hen of HLRS

Local Project ID: PP14112588

Understanding the light emitted by (magnetically) active cool stars (‘M dwarfs’) is a major challenge for astrophysics. In this project, scientists use their PHOENIX/3D code to simulate the light emitted by a ‘box’ inside the outer layers of an active M dwarf in detail. The temperatures and pressures inside the box are taken from an existing gas dynamics simulation (including magnetic field effects) by S. Wedemeyer (Oslo). The computational requirements of detailed non-equilibrium 3D radiative transfer simulations are staggering and require the largest supercomputers on Earth.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Peter Hauschildt, Hamburger Sternwarte, Universität Hamburg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: hhh15

Researchers finished the implementation and verification of a 3D non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE/3D) module for the PHOENIX/3D model atmosphere simulation code. The methods were extended to also allow NLTE modelling of molecular lines (here: CO) and then used to model the radiation from parameterized star-spots to investigate the effects of detailed 3D radiation transport on observables.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Minna Palmroth, Earth Observation Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki (Finland)

HPC Platform used: Hazel Hen of HLRS

Local Project ID: PP14112573

Space weather is an increasingly important aspect for our technology-dependent society. Modelling space weather is difficult, however, a Finnish team has succeeded in something that was said to be impossible: an accurate simulation of the large-scale near-Earth space environment. PRACE Tier-0 grant from Hazel Hen (HLRS, Stuttgart) both allowed the Vlasiator team to discover new space physics phenomena, and significantly helped in the acceptance of the second European Research Council grant awarded to the project PI in fall 2015.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: David Weir, Department of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, University of Stavanger (Norway)

HPC Platform used: Hazel Hen of HLRS

Local Project ID: PP14112721

Gravitational waves are ripples in spacetime, predicted by Einstein already a century ago. With the announcement earlier this year that gravitational waves had been successfully detected from two black holes merging, attention now turns to other potential sources of gravitational waves. Such sources include dramatic events that may have occurred very early in the history of the universe. Understanding these other sources also informs the design of future gravitational wave detectors, such as the European Space Agency (ESA) project eLISA.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Giovanni Lapenta, KU Leuven (Belgium)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr87di

The process of magnetic reconnection — when magnetic fields in plasma reconfigure and explosively release thermal and kinetic energy — is only just beginning to be understood. Professor Giovanni Lapenta has been carrying out simulations on SuperMUC of how these events can cause chain reactions that very quickly fill vast volumes of space. This data is now being verified with the recent NASA Magnetospheric MultiScale Mission that is measuring magnetic reconnection events around the Earth.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Mats Carlsson, Institute of Theoretical Astrophysics, University of Oslo (Norway)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr85wo

A simulation project, run on SuperMUC, targets the intrinsic physics of the chromosphere in order to understand its mass and energy budgets and transfer mechanisms. Elucidating these is a principal quest of solar physics, a necessary step towards better space-weather prediction, and of interest to general astrophysics using the Sun as a close-up Rosetta-Stone star and to plasma physics using the Sun and heliosphere as a nearby laboratory. The project aims at a breakthrough in our understanding of the solar chromosphere by developing sophisticated radiation-magnetohydrodynamic simulations.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Felix Spanier, Institut für Theoretische Physik und Astrophysik, Universität Würzburg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

An international research collaboration led by the University of Würzburg delved into the subjects of turbulence and particle acceleration in the solar wind by performing highly complex numerical simulations leveraging the particle-in-cell (PiC) approach, a technique used to solve a certain class of partial differential equations thus capable of studying these phenomena. In order to model the complex system of different waves, particles and electromagnetic fields self-consistently, the use of massive computing power such as provided by high performance computing system SuperMUC is inevitable.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Anne Stockem Novo, Ruhr-University Bochum (Germany)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: hbo41

The acceleration of charged particles is still one of the most important problems in astrophysics. Cosmic rays, which mainly consist of protons, show a broad spectrum with energies up to 1021 eV, which can be produced in collisionless shocks. However, many questions are still open regarding the acceleration process and the process of shock formation. To study this complex process with non-linear methods, researchers used JUQUEEN to investigate different aspects of the shock formation process and further applications.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Hubertus Klahr, Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie, Heidelberg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: hhd19

Scientists of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg are using the HPC infrastructure of the Jülich Supercomputing Centre for extensive magneto-hydro-dynamical and million particle simulations of protoplanetary disks to study their evolution and properties. Findings are helping the researchers to understand the processes leading to the formation of planets, moons and asteroids. Their investigations will help to explain the observed diversity in planetary systems and in our own solar system.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Ana-Catalina Plesa, German Aerospace Center/DLR, Berlin (Germany)

HPC Platform used: Hornet of HLRS

Local Project ID: MATHECO

Scientists of the German Aerospace Center Berlin (DLR) exploited the computing capacity of the petascale system Hornet of HLRS to study the convective dynamics and evolution of planetary interiors. The goal of the large-scale simulation project MATHECO (MAntle THErmo-chemical COnvection Simulations), which scaled to 54,000 compute cores of the supercomputer Hornet, was to gain further insights into the cooling history of planets and its influences on volcanic and tectonic surface processes.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Patrick Kilian, Lehrstuhl für Astronomie, Universität Würzburg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: Hermit of HLRS

Local Project ID: EAINRS

Observations show that Earth is constantly bombarded by highly energetic particles that are called cosmic rays. A possible explanation for the origin of the cosmic rays as well as their energy distribution is particle acceleration at shock fronts. Several different physical processes take place there, but due to the large astrophysical distances it is, unfortunately, impossible to study these in-situ. One way out is large scale computer simulations.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Dr. Andreas Pawlik, Max-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik, Garching (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr83le

A multi-million compute hours allocation by the Gauss Centre for Supercomputing on HPC system SuperMUC of the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) was used to carry out Aurora, a new set of radiation-hydrodynamical simulations of galaxy formation during reionization. Numerical simulations have emerged as the most powerful tools for the ab initio theoretical treatment of reionization. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Hans-Thomas Janka, Max-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik, Garching (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr86la

The Stellar Core-Collapse Group at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics (MPA) is able to conduct the presently most advanced 3D supernova simulations thanks to a suitably constructed description of the neutrino physics and a highly efficient, extremely well parallelized numerical implementation on petascale system SuperMUC. Because neither experiments nor direct observations can reveal the processes at the center of exploding stars, highly complex numerical simulations are indispensable to develop a deeper and quantitative understanding of this hypothetical “neutrino-driven explosion mechanism”, whose solid theoretical foundation is still missing.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Luís O. Silva, GoLP/Instituto de Plasmas e Fusão Nuclear, Lisboa (Portugal)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: PRA_2015

A team of researchers has performed the largest simulations of unmagnetised shocks driven in astrophysical conditions to determine the parameters required to excite shocks in the laboratory, and studied the set of complex and nonlinear phenomena involved in these scenarios, such as magnetic field generation and particle acceleration. The simulations have been performed with the state-of-the-art particle-in-cell code OSIRIS.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Stefanie Walch, Universität zu Köln (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr62su

A European team of scientists from Cologne, Garching, Heidelberg, Prague and Zurich used GCS HPC resources to model representative regions of disk galaxies using adaptive, three-dimensional simulations at unprecedented resolution and with the necessary physical complexity to follow the full life-cycle of molecular clouds. They aim to provide a self-consistent answer as to how stellar feedback regulates the star formation efficiency of a galaxy, how molecular clouds are formed and destroyed, and how galactic outflows are driven.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Robi Banerjee, Hamburger Sternwarte (Germany)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: hhd14

(Using GCS HPC resources, a group of scientist from a number of international institutes were able to prove that very weak magnetic fields can be efficiently amplified during different stages of cosmic evolution. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Friedrich Röpke, Universität Würzburg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: hmu13

(Type Ia supernovae, gigantic astrophysical explosions that completely disrupt one star and shine brighter than an entire galaxy consisting of 100 billion stars, have been successfully used to measure distances in the Universe. But what are the stars that give birth to Type Ia supernovae? The answer to this question remains elusive despite advances in modelling and observing these cosmic events over the past decades. From the perspective of theoretical modelling, only detailed multi-dimensional simulations of the explosion process on the most powerful supercomputers offer a way to tackle this long-standing problem. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Dr. Sascha Husa, Universitat de les Illes Balears (Spain)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr86va

A team of about 20 scientists working in Europe, India, South Africa and the USA have been involved in an Astrophysics simulation project calculated on LRZ system SuperMUC. The obtained results will allow the efficient detection and identification of gravitational wave events, e.g. to tell apart black holes from neutron stars.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Volker Springel, HITS, Universität Heidelberg (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr85je

An international team of scientists at the Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS), MIT, Harvard University and the University of Cambridge has carried out the “Illustris Simulation” on the SuperMUC and CURIE supercomputers, and created the largest and most sophisticated computational model of cosmic structure formation thus far.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Klaus Dolag, University Observatory Munich (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr83li

In project Magneticum, scientists perform simulations of which the most computational intensive one covers a cosmic volume of 1 Gpc3. This allows the researchers, for the very first time, to self consistently study galaxy clusters and groups, galaxies, and active galaxy nuclei (AGNs) within an enormously large volume of the Universe.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Luciano Rezzolla, Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute), Potsdam-Golm (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr32pi

Scientists from the Albert Einstein Institute in Potsdam/Germany used HPC system SuperMUC to study the dynamics of compact-object binaries, i.e. neutron stars and black holes, and to improve our understanding of strong gravity. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Minna Palmroth, Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki

HPC Platform used: Hermit of HLRS

Local Project ID: PP12061111

The HPC resources of HLRS Stuttgart enabled the world’s first global runs of the near-Earth space using a hybrid-Vlasov approach at highest resolutions. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Sven Bingert, Max-Planck-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, Göttingen (Germany)

HPC Platform used: Hermit of HLRS

Local Project ID: BRUSH

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Göttingen employed a three-dimensional numerical model on GCS supercomputer Hermit of HLRS Stuttgart to investigate the heating process of the highly structured and dynamic corona. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Paolo Padoan, Instituto de Ciencias del Cosmos (ICC), Universidad de Barcelona (Spain)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr86li

An international team of scientists used GCS supercomputing resources to study the evolution and fragmentation of clouds into stars. The degree of complexity, resulting from the mutual interaction of magnetic fields, gravity, and supersonic turbulence, is such that no complete theory of star formation is available to date. The best way to tackle this problem is to use powerful supercomputers such as petascale system SuperMUC of LRZ.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Gianluigi Bodo, INAF Astrophysical Observatory of Torino (Italy)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: PRA057

Accretion discs can power some of the most energetic phenomena in the universe and understanding how they work is very important for the comprehension of different astrophysical problems like how stars are formed or what happens in the central cores of galaxies.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Dr. Ilian Iliev, Astronomy Centre, Physics and Astronomy, University of Sussex (U.K.)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr86be

Scientists used GCS supercomputing resources to perform a series of state-of-the-art constrained simulations of the first galaxies and their radiative effects in our Local Universe, among the largest and most detailed of their kind, following tens of billions of particles, while also modelling the complex physics involved in this process.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Steffen Heß, Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam/AIP (Germany)

HPC Platform used: JUQUEEN of JSC

Local Project ID: hpo08

Scientists improved and combined methods to simulate the formation of the actual distribution of galaxies and galaxy clusters which allowed them to simulate the density distribution in the local universe up to distances of 670 million light-years.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Dr. Christoph Federrath, Monash University, Clayton (Australia)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: h1343

To advance the so far limited knowledge of density probability distribution function and the power spectrum of compressible, supersonic turbulence, a team of astrophysicists compared hydrodynamic models with numerical resolutions of 2563–40963 mesh points and with two distinct driving mechanisms, solenoidal (divergence-free) driving and compressive (curl-free) driving. By doing so, the scientists ran the world's largest simulation of supersonic turbulence on GCS supercomputers. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Christina Korntreff, Jülich Supercomputing Centre (Germany)

HPC Platform used: JUROPA of JSC

Local Project ID: hbn30

Using hydrodynamic simulations on GCS supercomputers, a team of scientists from the Max-Planck-Institute for Radio Astronomy, Bonn, and Jülich Supercomputing Centre investigated the influences of surrounding gas onto the period of binary systems. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Ewald Müller, Max-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik, Garching/München (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr86la

Massive stars end their lives as core-collapse supernovae when the stellar core implodes to a neutron star and the stellar envelope is expelled. Using computer models, we have simulated the mixing processes occurring during the explosion without assuming any symmetry.

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Frederic Bournaud, CEA Saclay (France)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr86di

Numerical simulations are a crucial tool to understand the physics of gas turbulence and star formation: there is no analytic theory. More than six decades of spatial scales need to be described, which is best done with "adaptive resolution" codes on supercomputers. 

Astrophysics

Principal Investigator: Wolfram Schmidt, Institut für Astrophysik, Universität Göttingen (Germany)

HPC Platform used: SuperMUC of LRZ

Local Project ID: pr74bi

One of the cutting-edge problems in current astrophysical research is the formation and evolution of galaxies similar to our Milky Way Galaxy.