A broad range of projects are being carried out in the areas of energy and sustainability, including improving efficiency in combustion and energy systems, renewable energy, pollution abatement, hydrogen utilization, fuel cells, carbon capture and sequestration, sustainable chemical processes, and design of energy efficient buildings.
- Properties of Gas Hydrates to assist in developing Sustainable Energy, Thermal roperties of Gas Hydrates (Kenneth D. Jordan group)
- Environmentally Sound: High Performance, Compact Thermoacoustic Refrigeration (Laura Schaefer group)
- Making Solar Power more Accessible (Geoffrey Hutchison group)
- Modeling Turbulence to build more Efficient Engines (Peyman Givi group)
- Capturing CO2
Computational research in nanoscience and materials engineering spans orders of magnitude in time and length scales, ranging from fundamental studies of materials at the atomic level to designing materials with tailored properties on the micron length scale to simulating properties of granular materials on the millimeter length scale, to materials and lifecycle issues associated with macroscale systems.
- Adsorption on nanotube surfaces to create cleaner and more efficient energy
(Karl Johnson group)
- Characterizing nanomaterials to expand our knowledge across many fields
- Polymer-surface interactions
- Agglomeration and segregation of cohesive materials to create more efficient materials for industry
High-performance computing plays an integral role in emerging areas of medicine and biology. At the smallest scale, medical and biological research deals with molecular interactions, e.g., modeling of proteins, and enzymes. Modeling of subcellular assemblies, such as ion channels and cell membranes, involves modeling of systems of biomolecules. At still larger scales, entire cellular systems are modeled.
- Protein folding and binding to increase drug efficiency (Lillian Chong group)
- Ion transport through biological ion channels to combat the progression and development of diseases (Rob Coalson group)
- Modeling biological systems through math and computation in order to better understand things such as wound healing and the immune response to influenza infection (Complex Biological Systems Group)
- Creating models of how the brain and immune system function and change over time in response to certain illnesses, infections, and treatment
(G. Bard Ermentrout Group)
- Data modeling and visualization of joints (Liz Marai group)
- Computational Modeling of Molecular and Cellular Systems
- Protein-DNA and protein-drug interactions and biomolecular complexes and assemblies
The use of high-performance computing to tackle important problems in public health, including epidemic control, behavioral dynamics, and health systems, is a relatively new endeavor. Pitt is playing a leadership role in this new field.
- Modeling Pan-epidemics (Dean Donald Burke group)
- Creating new vaccines to treat infectious diseases
- Genetic epidemiology of common diseases
Computer modeling is playing an increasingly important role in economic forecasting and in predicting human behavior in response to various economic contingencies. Pitt researchers are working to develop numerical methods capable of converting theoretical models into statistical models capable of quantifying predicted reactions to various contingencies. The ultimate goal is to guide policy decisions regarding, for example, social security reform, credit-market interventions, etc.
- Simulations of Economies (David Dejong group)
- Natural Language Processing
- Simulations and Modeling of Natural Disasters (Louise Comfort group)
Advanced visualization methods are essential in the modeling of complex systems. Modern visualization research involves the development of new techniques to blend modeling, simulation, visualization, and analysis of data into a seamless loop. The loop provides computational steering and helps guide investigations.
Many other areas within the University of Pittsburgh utilize high-performance computing to make advances in research. Examples include high-energy physics, astronomy, and geology.