ME Student to Attend Los Alamos National Laboratory Summer Workshop

Mechanical Engineering graduate student Frank VanGessel was selected to attend the Los Alamos National Laboratory's prestigious Computational Physics Student Summer Workshop in Los Alamos, New Mexico. VanGessel will have the opportunity to spend the summer of 2015 working with some of the world’s best computational scientists.

According to the workshop description, the event aims to bring Los Alamos National Laboratory a diverse group of exceptional undergraduate and graduate students for informative, enriching lectures, and to work with its staff for 10 weeks on interesting, relevant projects that may culminate in articles or conference presentations.

VanGessel is currently in his fourth semester as a Master’s student. His focus is on the computational modeling of material properties, specifically focusing on the computational modeling of phonon transport in crystalline materials, which allows one to obtain accurate temperature profiles at nanometer scales. He plans on pursuing his Ph.D. at the University of Maryland while working under the mentorship of Associate Professor Peter Chung.

 “I am very excited to be selected for this workshop," said VanGessel. "The selection process was quite competitive and my fellow participants come from well-respected institutions all over the country. I look forward to the opportunity to represent Maryland, collaborate with researchers and most of all learn from my peers and mentors.”

During the workshop, students are organized into small groups working under the guidance of one or more mentors. Each participant is awarded a fellowship that typically ranges from $7,500 to $13,000, based on academic rank (junior, senior, 1st year graduate student, etc.). This year’s topics include projects such as a variable density incompressible RANS testbed in Python, multi-scale materials modeling and warm dense matter calculations using OFMD among a multitude of others.

"The main thing I wish to achieve at the workshop is to immerse myself in the computational modeling culture," said VanGessel. "I will have the opportunity to work with researchers who do modeling every single day and I want to learn as much as possible from them."

For more information on the Computational Physics Student Summer Workshop, please visit their website.

Published April 14, 2015