SUMMER SCHOOL ANNOUNCEMENT
QUANTUM MONTE CARLO AND THE CASINO PROGRAM
Sun 3rd August - Sun 10th August 2014
The Apuan Alps Centre for Physics @ TTI
Vallico Sotto, Tuscany, Italy
Summer school programme
Previous schools and further information
The ninth international summer school in the series "Quantum Monte Carlo
and the CASINO program" will take place during August 2014 at the TTI
monastery in the Tuscan Apuan Alps in Italy, organized and hosted by members
and associates of Cambridge University physics department's Theory of
Condensed Matter Group. The aim of the school is to give students a thorough
introduction to quantum Monte Carlo as a method for performing high-quality
calculations of the electronic structure of atoms, molecules, and materials.
The course is designed for quantum chemists or theoretical physicists
who have no previous experience with this technique; people at any
stage of their career who are interested are welcome to take part.
The monastery - incorporating the Apuan Alps Centre for Physics -
is a unique venue where the magnificent
location and community spirit have inspired a long series of memorable schools and workshops since it first opened its doors almost ten years ago. It is a delightful
15th century building incorporating an ancient church, and is situated in
the isolated but spectacular setting of the Tuscan mountain village of
Vallico Sotto. The church is fully equipped with the relevant presentation and
computer technology, and all accommodation is on-site or in other houses in the village. As with all events
at the Institute, formal lectures are restricted to the mornings, and
participants are encouraged to spend much of the rest of the day thinking, contemplating, and discussing the issues at hand. Practical computer
exercises after lunch will be followed by a
programme of recreational activities such as mountain walks, cave trips, and city visits organized for the latter half of most afternoons; the days generally conclude with tasty evening meals in local family restaurants.
Describing the complex behaviour of materials at the atomic level requires
a sophisticated description of the correlated motion of the electrons.
Quantum Monte Carlo (QMC) is an increasingly popular and explicitly
many-body method with the unique capability of yielding highly accurate
results whilst also exhibiting a very favourable scaling of computational
cost with system size, and essentially perfect parallel scaling up to (at least)
hundreds of thousands of computer cores. Over the last twenty years, the
Cambridge group have been researching QMC methods and we have created a
powerful, general computer program - CASINO - to carry out the
calculations. The school will focus both on the basic theory of QMC and on
more advanced practical techniques, and will include a thorough
introduction to the CASINO program. A background in density functional
theory or similar - though not essential - is normally thought to be
useful, as is an ability to operate computers through a Linux command line environment.
Quantum Monte Carlo and the scaling behaviour of CASINO on the fastest
computers in the world were the subject of a recent Psi-k "Scientific
Highlight of the Month" review article. See "Petascale computing opens new
vistas for quantum Monte Carlo" by M.J.Gillan, M.D. Towler and D.Alfè,
available for download here.
Instructors will include the main authors of the CASINO program (Dr. Mike
Towler, Dr. Neil Drummond and Dr. Pablo López Ríos) and possibly others.
Participants who need to fly to Italy would normally book a flight to Pisa airport (or possibly Florence) from
where onward transportation will be arranged. Other airports such
as Milano/Roma are possible if you don't mind a longer train trip. Details of previous schools - including photographs and comments from the participants - are
available under the Events List links on the TTI web site.
Interested students should email Mike Towler (mdt26 at cam.ac.uk) for
registration and further registration.
List of participants:
Ali Bagci (University of Clermont-Ferrand, France)
Braulio Brito (University of Sao Paulo, Brazil)
Eike Caldeweyher (University of Bonn, Germany)
Kuang-Yu Samuel Chang (University of Basel, Switzerland)
Shibing Chu (Lanzhou University, China)
Bruno Cramer (University of Campinas, Brazil)
Caterina De Franco (University of L'Aquila, Italy)
Katharina Doblhoff-Dier (University of Leiden, Holland)
Ebru Dogan (Boğaziçi University, Turkey)
Sabri Elatresh (Dalhousie University, Canada)
Fatih Ersan (Adnan Menderes University, Turkey)
Jan Florian (Loyola University, Chicago, U.S.A.)
Ali Ghafari (Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany)
Wei Guo (University of Bayreuth, Germany)
Isabel Hart (University of Gothenburg, Sweden)
Jiří Hostaš (Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic)
Jan Jenke (University of Bochum, Germany)
Yelda Kadioglu (Adnan Menderes University, Turkey)
Saudi Woman (King Abdullah University, Saudi Arabia)
Thomas Mellan (University College, London, U.K.)
Elisabeth Morelle (University of Geneva, Switzerland)
Christoph Reimann (University of Bonn, Germany)
Giovanni Rillo (University of Aquila, Italy)
Peter Townsend (University of Cambridge, U.K.)
Fan Wang (Sichuan University, China)
Thomas Whitehead (University of Cambridge, U.K.)
Dmitry Zvezhinsky (ITEP, Moscow, Russia)
Emails from students attending previous schools in this series
"I am writing to thank you again for organising the Summer School. I
learned a lot and I had an amazing time. Everything we did was
amazing, from climbing to caving, and from football to dinners. But
of all the things the most valuable to me was the people I met, the
discussions we had and the science we learned.
I think you are doing something amazing in TTI, and I hope you keep
it going for a long time! I hope many generations of young students
can continue benefiting from it!
Thank you very much again!"
"I am writing to thank you again because of the amazing school
which was the best one I have ever had.
"I'm meanwhile back in [my city] with many many nice memories on the past
week. It was a pleasure to learn about QMC in such a magnificent environment
and I really appreciate your way of approaching science. Especially how you
manage to have a life next to science. I have not only learned about QMC,
but valuable lessons for my personal development as well.
"I would like to thank you for facilitating a wonderful
summer school. I learnt a tremendous amount during the week. It was an
invaluable experience to meet other academics from around the world. The
excursions were most enjoyable. I count myself privileged to have experienced a
bit of the Tuscan way of life and to have been among the majestic beauty of
the alps. All in all, the week has broadened my perspective and experience of life and physics."
"I am writing you to thank you again for this really wonderful Summer
School, where I really learned so much about QMC. CASINO is already
running on our cluster and the performance is really impressive. ...
Yesterday I gave the talk about the Summer School in our internal group
seminar, and it was a great success. Most of the people in my group
think that they can use it for their projects to get better results and
get wrong trends obtained by DFT in the correct order by using QMC
simulations. ... Thanks again for this great experience, which gave me a lot of new
motivation for my projects.
"I am really happy to see that you are preparing a new Casino Summer
School in Vallico Sotto. It remains for me the most profitable workshop I
have ever had, associating the top quality of lectures and the excellent
practical training, making very difficult things to become accessible. It
remains also for me the type of ideal ambience associating work,
scientific discussion and entertainments."
"Just a brief note to thank you again for hosting the QMC summer school. I
had a wonderful time in Tuscany, it was probably the best conference or
school I've attended. The science was excellent, and the location,
obviously, stunning. The Towler Institute is a very impressive place.
Every one of the participants was a pleasure to spend time with, and I've
come away with some friends with whom I intend to keep in contact."
"Thank you for organizing a great work shop.
My wife was pleased to get me back but since I had such a great time has
already agreed for me to make a return visit!"
"I wanted to thank you a lot for the opportunity you gave me, i had a very
nice time in Vallico sotto, it actually opened a lot my mind... It was
very nice to met you and your nice family, and to know that there are such
a nice people with such a vision of physics and life, i hope i could see
you guys again."
"Thank you for all. It has been a really nice summer school, and a pleasure to have such lovely days with you, your family, Pablo and Neil. You have made a really good job organizing everything, and making sure that everybody enjoyed this summer school. I am in a debt of gratitude with you."
"In the flight back from Italy to Germany i read the material you gave me
about the cave, and specially i liked the story about the fat boy filter,
i couldn't help laughing hard in the flight, i couldn't stop!, i'm very
curious about that place and the another one the Palace of Ismeno,
hopefully someday i could go there again and try to go into it, actually
the school and its activities awoke on me a kind of desire of climbing,
hopefully i find the time for it...."
"It has been fun & work - intellectually challenging to learn new 'stuff'. I wish you & Samantha great success in the endeavours connected to TTI, and hope to see you both soon."
"Thank you, Neil and Pablo for organizing this wunderful, refreshing
sommerschool. I enjoyed it a lot (thought the scoreline somewhat less), and
have learned some interesting aspects of QMC."
"Thank you very much indeed for the wonderful stay at your monastery/institute."
"Thanks for the wonderful week! You are an amazing host, and TTI is fantastic!"
"Thanks a lot for the opportunity you have given, at least my eyes have opened to a new world of research. I have to thank you for this."
"One more time thanks for one week pleasure."
"They were very nice days in Tuscany with learning many new subjects
and also nice excursions."
"The school was a great blessing to me. Thank you for giving
me the opportunity to meet new brains and make new friends."
"Big 'thank you!' for this Summer School. Your organisation skills are
It was a wonderful time, and I am starting to save up the euros to
settle down in the Apuan Alps one day.
Thanks also for setting up the website, I find it very useful and
lots of fun."
"I would like to thank you for this great summer school.
I really enjoyed the time I spent there."
"Thanks for everything. I will never forget this great week!"
"You bet how wonderful time I had (I believe others students did too) in
this fantastic summer school!! I would like to quote a very popular
Chinese poem to show my personal feeling of the almost ideal life in
Song No. 5 of 20 by Tao Yuan-ming
I built my hut within where others live,
But there is no noise of carriages and horses.
You ask how this is possible:
When the heart is distant, solitude comes.
I pluck chrysanthemums by the eastern fence
And see the distant southern mountains.
The mountain air is fresh at dusk.
Flying birds return in flocks.
In these things there lies a great truth,
But when I try to express it, I cannot find the words.
This can be recited by almost every Chinese fellow. I am also grateful for
the night of awesome firework, which was like special "time tunnel" to
bring me back to my childhood. Thank you and thank you!! I was in a bit
hurry I didn't bring camera with me, but the whole beautiful scenery has
been deeply impressed in my memory, which is unfadable for sure.."
"I want to say again, 'Thank You for a good time in Tuscany'. All particular facets of school was great, including lectures, practice, place, people, activities, food etc. It was my first summer school (conference) but I think it shall be hard to find something better. Thanks."
"It was a pleasure to be in the summer school last week in Vallico Sotto, to meet you and your team, this "strange foreign people" (including myself), and Sammy and Saska. I liked very much the lectures, learned many things and enjoyed a lot our excursions and dinners. We really had a good time, congratulations on the organization of this fantastic enterprise. Thank you very much!"
"Thank you for hosting the wonderful summer school on earth. I had really enjoyed that :)"
"Thank you for a great week both when it comes to science and adventure. Now I really understand why people return to Tuscany. Hopefully we will too."
"Thanks for the nice time we spent at your place all together! It was very nice time, nice way to socialize and all lectures were extremely interesting!"
"Thank you - you, Neil and Pablo brought us such a fruitful and joyful summer school!!! I have learned so much about the technical parts of QMC as well as the related applied physical problems!! Including learning that QMC can describe the Van der Waale's interaction, description of the e-h phase diagram and the interesting discussion in your talk about the strongly correlated systems!! Not to mention that we got all those different options of activities every day to exercise our bodies after the brain exercises in the morning, besides the interesting monastery we took the lectures, slept in and had meals, tea and coffee!!! Really gratefully to you three for the wonderful time!!"
"I will advice your school to anyone on the earth"
"..thank you very much for organizing the conference -- it was amazing
and I have a lot of fun memories! You're right that bringing a whole load of
like-minded people together in one place at the same time is fantastic; it
was great to have this unique experience before starting my PhD next year."
"Thanks again! Besides having fun and learning at the school,
I'm truly impressed with what you did with the TTI and how
the whole school was organized. I've been to a few before,
but this was special!"
"First of all, I am really thankful for your help. It was the first
time I participated to the such workshop and it was really helpful
for me and I could learn many things during this summer school. I hope that
such workshops will be continued as it indeed helps those who are
interested in QMC."
"We enjoy a lot this amazing week. Thank you for all"
"Thanks for putting on the entire school and making it a
wonderful (and well organised) week! I've never experienced quite the
combination of excessive learning and excessive exercise."
"Thank you very much for arranging a special summer school. I am very much grateful to you. The excellent lectures, trips to mountains, beaches, caves, all lots of fun all the time. The stay at Tuscany will be a lifetime memory for me!
You're wonderful. You did a great job. Long live QMC Summmer School. PS: Visit Nepal.."
"The summer school is an excellent in my whole life and I have really got inspired. I think every one who attends the QMC school will go back to home with great spirits. My words fail to explain how much I have enjoyed the lectures and outing trips. Thanks a lot for everything.. I will really miss you."
"Quero agradecer, o tempo, a simpatia, com que me receberar no vosso TTI. O meu sincero agradecimento pela possibilidade de evoluir e aprender com o vosso exemplo. A escola de verao foi moito mais do que QMC. A escola de verao foi una licao de vida. ... Com elevada estima e consideracao."
"I wanted to thank you a lot for organizing a great Summer school and
for the opportunity you gave me to attend it. It was very nice to
meet you, Neil, Pablo and your family. The quality of the lectures
and the excellent exercises were making very difficult issues
understandable for me. Your organizing skills are really impressive;
I had wonderful time in Vallico Sotto. I truly enjoyed the outing
trips and the dinners."
"This is the unique school i have got in my life which will be
remembered through out my life. School with whole lots of adventures...
"I'd like to thank again for this wonderful week! I think it gave me enough
energy to start and finish my PhD studies... If that's not the case then I'm
afraid that I have to visit Vallico Sotto again :)"
"I want thank you very much the amazing experience, I have learnt much
about DMC and about its applications in molecules (when I finished my
thesis I would like work in this field because you have shown me that
it is a interesting area to work). It was nice to meet people like
all of you. I hope to see you again.
I am really grateful to you to enable climb Monte Procinto and to
scale the waterfall too, because I think, it was been the most
exciting adventure in my life."
"Thank you very much for everything. It just because of you we had a wonderful time. You are not only a [EMBARRASSING PRAISE DELETED] but a [EMBARRASSING PRAISE DELETED]. I will be grateful for the hospitality you provided in the summer school. .. Wishing you a very good luck and may God fulfil you with lots of joy and happiness. Hats off to you. Regards to the man."
DETAILS AND PHOTOS FROM PREVIOUS SCHOOLS ACCESSIBLE ON TTI WEB PAGE (Click 'PUBLIC EVENTS').