SciDAC Feature

Three-Dimensional Simulations of Core-Collapse Supernova Explosions

The Core-collapse supernova problem is a long-standing multi-physics conundrum in radiation/hydrodynamics that has resisted solution for more than 50 years. We are now in a position to simulate in three dimensions the detailed collapse and explosive evolution of the cores of the progenitor massive stars.

Using the sophisticated code Fornax, developed expressly to address supernova theory, we have recently simulated (using NERSC, Blue Waters, Stampede2) more than ten 3D neutrino-radiation/hydrodynamics models (and this is a fraction of our planned model suite, soon to be joined by INCITE/Theta runs), most of which explode naturally with default physics. This is the largest and most comprehensive 3D study ever performed in supernova theory.

Together with our exploration of the supernova mechanism, we are calculating the recoil kicks, the gravitational wave signals, the debris morphologies, the neutrino signatures, and the nucleosynthesis associated with these 3D models of explosion.

Recent papers: arXiv:1801.01914, arXiv:1801.08148, arXiv:1804.00689, arXiv:1806.07390, arXiv:1809.05106, arXiv:1812.07703

Prof. Adam Burrows, Princeton, SciDAC4-TEAMS collaboration


In today's world, supercomputers are essential to addressing scientific topics of national interest, including clean energy, new materials, climate change, the origins of the universe, and the nature of matter. The SciDAC program was initiated in 2001 (Program Plan) to develop the Scientific Computing Software and Hardware Infrastructure needed to advance scientific discovery using supercomputers. As supercomputers continuously evolve, direct engagement of computer scientists and applied mathematicians with the scientists of targeted application domains becomes ever more necessary for taking full advantage of these new systems. In this regard, SciDAC is a partnership involving US Department of Energy’s all 6 Office of Science (SC) programs — Advanced Scientific Computing Research, Basic Energy Sciences, Biological and Environmental Research, Fusion Energy Sciences, High-Energy Physics, and Nuclear Physics — as well as Office of Nuclear Energy to dramatically accelerate progress in scientific computing that delivers breakthrough scientific results through partnerships composed of applied mathematicians, computer scientists, and scientists from other disciplines.

Since its inception, the SciDAC model has accelerated the pace of scientific discovery. Now in its fourth cycle, SciDAC continues to address mathematical and computational challenges related to predictive modeling and high fidelity simulations and to the generation and management of large data sets, increased demand for scientific credibility, and expected disruptions in computer architectures.

Although SciDAC is a partnership among SC programs, it is also built around collaborative teams of experts from national laboratories, universities, and other research organizations. This approach not only taps into the broadest range of expertise but also ensures that the resulting tools and methods will be available to the wider research community.