DOE Grant Will Support Grad Students in Computational HEP Training

February 3, 2023

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The University of California Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory are part of a new $3.2 million consortium funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science to train the next generation of computational high-energy physicists.

As physics and astrophysics experiments collect more data for high-precision measurements, researchers have come to depend on large-scale computing infrastructure and high-performance computing algorithms. Many collaborations have dedicated experts in advanced computing technologies who are also experts in particle physics.

“Future high energy physics discoveries will require large accurate simulations and efficient collaborative software,” said Regina Rameika, DOE Associate Director of Science for High Energy Physics. “These traineeships will educate the scientists and engineers necessary to design, develop, deploy, and maintain the software and computing infrastructure essential for the future of high energy physics.” 

The new Western Advanced Training for Computational High-Energy Physics (WATCHES) brings together six public universities and three national laboratories to create a tailored modular curriculum and offer intensive research opportunities for graduate students during a two-year training period. The training areas are hardware-software co-design, collaborative software infrastructure, and high-performance software and algorithms.

“This traineeship program will enable our graduate students to develop cutting-edge expertise needed by large science collaborations with enormous datasets and computational complexity,” said Haichen Wang, a professor at the UC Berkeley and a faculty scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. “Our program also provides training opportunities in scientific communication, project leadership, and responsible conduct.” Berkeley Physics faculty members Heather Gray and Marjorie Shapiro are co-investigators of this program. 

The WATCHEP institutes joining UC Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in this program are Oregon State University, UC Irvine, UC San Diego, UC Santa Cruz, University of Washington, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and Fermilab.