posted on December 4, 2013

Long-time MSI Principal Investigator and Fellow J. Ilja Siepmann, a professor in the chemistry department in the College of Science and Engineering, has been named as a Fellow of the American Physical Society. This honor is in recognition of Professor Siepmann’s outstanding research contributions. The citation reads, “For the development of efficient Monte Carlo algorithms and accurate force fields and for applications to predictive modeling of complex chemical systems.” A story appears on the Department of Chemistry’s website.

Professor Siepmann has used MSI’s high-performance computing resources to support this research for many years. He has been a Fellow of the Supercomputing Institute since 1999. His current research at MSI involves using Monte Carlo algorithms to investigate multi-component multi-phase systems, accurate and transferable force fields with multiple levels of resolution, and first-principles simulation approaches. More information about this research is on the MSI website.

posted on December 3, 2013

On Wednesday, December 4, from 04:00 - 15:00, MSI staff will perform scheduled maintenance and upgrades to the network and various systems.

During this maintenance period, we will be performing the following updates:

  • Network firmware updates and modifications will be performed affecting external connectivity for up to 1 hour.
  • Panasas software update (widespread outage, clients could hang).
  • Stork, Overclocked lab nodes, and elmod will be offline for updates and relocation.


Systems status is always available on our Status page.

If you have any questions, please email


Posted on November 22, 2013

The Minnesota Population Center (MPC) was recently awarded $3.2 million to fund a project that will expand the Center’s Integrated Public Use Microdata Series. The project will add data on more than 600 million US individuals, greatly expanding the scope of the database. The OVPR Research blog has an article about the project and the MPC.

MSI provides high-performance computing resources that the MPC and its Executive Director, Regents Professor Steven Ruggles, use for “big data” and informatics analyses. 

posted November 20, 2013

Last weekend, MSI staff members participated in the College of Science and Engineering’s 2013 Math and Science Family Fun Fair. The Fair was held on Saturday, November 16 in Coffman Memorial Union. This annual event is designed for young people to learn about science, technology, engineering, and math in a fun and interesting way. About 4,000 visitors attended this year.

Staff at the MSI exhibit helped visitors make models of methane and sodium chloride, using toothpicks, gumdrops, and marshmallows. Visitors could also see a movie of work done at MSI and a 3D visualization of computational molecular modeling. The MSI team gave away over 1,000 molecule kits and the exhibit was busy the entire day.

View a slideshow of the MSI exhibit.

MSI people working at the exhibit included:
Eric Badger
Josh Baller
Drew Gustafson
Christy Henzler
Mike Knox
Ben Lynch
Connor Lynch
Michael Milligan
Munir Nassar
Tom Prather
Kanika Puri
Nancy Rowe (organizer for MSI exhibit)
Sushmita Singh
Ying Zhang

Additional assistance from:
Ravi Chityala
Yectli Huerta

posted on November 19, 2013

Assistant Professor Connie Lu (Chemistry) is featured in a new online publication by the American Chemical Society that highlights recent achievements by young researchers in the field of synthetic inorganic chemistry. The issue is available on the ACS Publications website. 

Professor Lu and her research group use MSI as part of their investigations into first-row transition metals, with the ultimate goal of making cheap and sustainable catalysts. They perform density functional theory and ab initio CASSCF (complete active space self-consistent field) calculations to support experimental work. Some of this work using MSI is featured in the papers linked from the ACS publication.