Computing Resources and Software Support for the UKQCD Physics Programme

Lead Research Organisation: University of Southampton
Department Name: School of Physics and Astronomy

Abstract

QCD is the quantum theory of the strong interaction, formulated in terms of elementary entities called quarks and gluons. In a laboratory, however, we only observe composite objects such as protons (qqq) or pi-mesons ( q -- anti-q), collectively known as hadrons. Explaining this dichotomy in a satisfactory way is a major unresolved question in theoretical physics, and indeed commands a prize of 1 million dollars from the Clay Mathematics Institute. In the interim, many important QCD questions can be addressed using a controlled approximation called lattice gauge theory, in which quarks and gluons are formulated only on the discrete points and links of a spacetime lattice. Properties such as the masses and interactions of hadrons, and the nature of the gluonic flux tube which holds quarks together with a force sufficient to lift 3 elephants can then be calculated using a numerical technique called Monte Carlo Importance Sampling. Precise lattice QCD results are now a crucial ingredient in projects which, by comparing theoretical predictions with the results of collider experiments, aim both to determine parameters of the Standard Model of particle physics, and if inconsistencies are found, to open up the exciting prospect of 'new physics'. Unfortunately, the number of lattice points required to make the calculations with the necessary precision is large, as is the computational effort associated with intermediate steps of the calculation once the quarks are assigned realistically small masses. In this proposal we argue that in order to achieve the required accuracy state-of-the-art high performance computing resources are needed; indeed, we cost our bid in units of 'teraflop-years', equivalent to some 3x10^19 individual computer operations. Lattice QCD is truly a Grand Challenge. The projects presented in this bid cover a broad sweep of different physics, ranging from precision calculations of hadrons; the properties of systems including heavy quarks such as 'charm' and 'bottom'; extracting fundamental parameters of the Standard Model of Particle Physics (such as the masses and decay properties of hadrons); the quark-gluon plasma which forms at temperatures in excess of a trillion kelvin; the exotic 'quark matter' thought to exist in the cores of neutron stars (having the mass of the Sun but compact enough to comfortably fit in Swansea Bay!); finally, the properties of QCD-like models in which the numbers of quarks and gluons differs from their real- world values of 3 and 8, offering the tantalising promise of making contact with pencil-and-paper approaches and ultimately the Clay prize....

Publications

10 25 50

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Boyle P (2010) K?p form factors with reduced model dependence in The European Physical Journal C

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Boyle PA (2013) Emerging understanding of the ?I=1/2 rule from lattice QCD. in Physical review letters

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Boyle, Peter A. And Flynn, Jonathan M. And Juttner, Andreas And Sachrajda, Christopher And Sivalingam, Karthee And Others (2012) Kaon semileptonic decays near the physical point in PoS

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Christ NH (2010) ? and ?' mesons from lattice QCD. in Physical review letters

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Goode, Elaine And Lightman, Matthew (2011) Delta I=3/2 K to pi-pi decays with nearly physical kinematics in PoS

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Goode, Elaine J. And Lightman, Matthew (2010) $\Delta I = 3/2, K to \pi \pi$ Decays with a Nearly Physical Pion Mass in PoS

 
Description RBC-UKQCD 
Organisation Brookhaven National Laboratory
Department RIKEN-BNL Research Center
Country United States 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Collaboration for joint research in lattice field theory, sharing computer resources and researcher time.
Collaborator Contribution Collaboration for joint research in lattice field theory, sharing computer resources and researcher time.
Impact Refereed research publications, conference reports.
Start Year 2006
 
Description RBC-UKQCD 
Organisation Columbia University
Department Department of Physics
Country United States 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Collaboration for joint research in lattice field theory, sharing computer resources and researcher time.
Collaborator Contribution Collaboration for joint research in lattice field theory, sharing computer resources and researcher time.
Impact Refereed research publications, conference reports.
Start Year 2006
 
Description RBC-UKQCD 
Organisation University of Edinburgh
Department School of Physics and Astronomy
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Collaboration for joint research in lattice field theory, sharing computer resources and researcher time.
Collaborator Contribution Collaboration for joint research in lattice field theory, sharing computer resources and researcher time.
Impact Refereed research publications, conference reports.
Start Year 2006
 
Description DiRAC 1 press releases 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Press releases to highlight research outputs and use on supercomputer facilities

online press releases
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009,2010,2011,2012