Jürg Diemand - SNF Professor
|Institute for Theoretical Physics
University of Zürich
+41 44 63 55820, Office: Y36 K 84
email: diemand 'at' physik.uzh.ch
Computational physics, large scale simulations using particles methods (molecular dynamics / N-Body), structure formation, non-equilibrium systems, phase transitions, emergent properties.
Large scale molecular dynamics simulations
We are currently running very large (up to 8 billion atoms, millions of time-steps) molecular dynamics simulations of homogeneous nucleation from vapor to liquid. Such first order phase transitions are familiar from everyday life (e.g. condensation of vapor in the atmosphere into mist) and play an important role in many areas of science and technology.
In spite of the familiarity and importance, accurate calculations of nucleation rates are still not possible, due to insufficient knowledge about the properties of the smallest droplets (nano-clusters). The unprecedented size of our simulations allows to form significant numbers of droplets under realistic conditions (i.e. without significant depletion of the vapor phase).
Dark matter and cosmological structure formation
We use very large N-body simulations to study the formation of dark matter structures in Cosmology. We are especially interested in the dark matter distribution in the halo around the Milky Way (see the via lactea project) and in very "small" scales (a few hundred AU), on which the smallest cold dark matter microhalos form (see e.g. nature.com).
We also apply our simulations results to investigations into the nature of dark matter and its detection, and to the on the distribution of the first black holes and the kinematics of stellar halos and globular cluster systems.
More simulation pictures and movies
Pictures and movies
illustrating the formation of a LCDM cluster
Illustrations of resolution effects in cosmological N-body simulations