Computational Astrophysics

3D 5123 simulation showing the column density of a turbulent box where the turbulence is driven by bipolar jets.

Computational astrophysics is the study of complex problems of cosmic structure and evolution through supercomputer simulations. Most problems in astrophysics involve multicomponent physics (gravity, fluid flows, radiation transfer, etc.) evolving over multiple scales in multiple dimensions. Examples are the movement of gas in a star, the formation of stars, the explosion of a massive star in a supernova blast, and the formation of galaxies and large-scale cosmological structures. Many problems in computational astrophysics have direct relevance to laser fusion. Supernova blast waves, for instance, are high-energy-density phenomena whose physical processes are similar or identical to those occurring in an imploding ICF fuel pellet.

For more information contact Prof. Adam Frank.