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Seminar: Scientific Computing in Practice – From MPACT to Course Development

November 29, 2018 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

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Dr. Brendan Kochunas
Assistant Research Scientist
Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Sciences (NERS)
University of Michigan


This talk will provide an overview of the experiences within the CASL project in the development of the MPACT code and how this supported the development of a new course sponsored by the Michigan Institute for Computational Discovery in Engineering (MICDE). MPACT started as Dr. Kochunas’s PhD research software and quickly matured with involvement of other individuals to become an internationally recognized code for simulating nuclear reactors. It is now the primary deterministic neutronics code for CASL and is co-developed with Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Making meaningful contributions to produce both: (i) a production quality next generation tool for industry and national labs, and (ii) academic research that advances the knowledge of the community requires a broad array of skills (and many people). With the growing importance of simulation in the various fields of engineering, there is an analogous need to teach tomorrow’s researchers and engineers the skills necessary to be productive computational scientists, capable of performing work that adheres to the scientific method. We explore the lessons and experiences with the development of MPACT for CASL and how those came to inform the curriculum developed for the course “Methods and Practice of Scientific Computing”.


Dr. Kochunas received his Bachelor’s degree in Nuclear engineering from Purdue University in 2006, then a Master’s degree from the University of California Berkeley in 2008 as an AFCI Fellow. Finally Dr. Kochunas received his PhD from the University of Michigan in 2013 with support from the CASL program. As a PhD student he was the first recipient of the CASL Knight Award for technical contributor of the year and has continued to play a key role in CASL since.


***Seminar will be streamed***


November 29, 2018
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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1202 Burlington Labs
2500 Stinson Drive
Raleigh, NC 27695-7909 United States
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