Center for Interdisziplinary Research

Quantum Fields in the Era of Teraflop-Computing

Date: November 22 - 25, 2004
Organizers: Frithjof Karsch, Edwin Laermann, Mikko Laine (Bielefeld)

The purpose of this workshop was to bring together a group of world-leading experts in the disciplines of large-scale supercomputing, applied mathematics and algorithm development, data analysis, theoretical particle physics (particularly QCD phenomenology, cosmology and heavy ion physics), as well as astrophysics, in order to prepare for the advent of a new generation of supercomputers during the next couple of years. This next generation will offer performances in the unprecedented range of up to tens of "teraflops". The goal was to make sure that these resources will be used in the optimal way, in order to obtain important new understanding on fundamental open problems in the physics settings mentioned.
The program spanned a period of three and a half days. The first three days started each with an introductory lecture on one of the main areas covered: by Dr. M. Hasenbusch, on algorithms; by Prof. M. Asakawa, on data analysis via so-called Bayesian methods; and by Prof. K. Rummukainen, on certain new physics applications. These presentations were followed by more specialised talks. As some highlights - each being represented by many speakers and each leading to vivid, sometimes controversial discussions - may be mentioned comprehensive presentations of all the forthcoming supercomputer platforms available; new developments with so-called twisted mass fermions; as well as the physics related to high baryon number densities, relevant for heavy ion collision experiments as well as for astrophysical systems such as neutron stars. Most of the talks on these topics, and others, continue to be publicly available on the conference website.
The workshop ended with a fourth day morning session, with two illuminating looks into the future: first by Prof. A. Ukawa, reporting on the planned Japanese physics program on teraflops scale computers, followed by Prof. P. Braun-Munzinger, on the future experimental program at the GSI Laboratory in Darmstadt as well as its link to lattice QCD.
In general, the workshop was characterised by a lively and enjoyable atmosphere. All practical arrangements worked beautifully, and the new ZiF auditorium was universally praised. A number of the participants expressed the opinion that, given its success, a similar workshop should be repeated in the foreseeable future.

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