500 physicists to attend Lattice Symposium in Mainz

Mainz Institute of Nuclear Physics will show scientists from throughout the world the research potential of HIM and PRISMA


More than 500 participants are expected at the 31st International Symposium on Lattice Field Theory to be held in Mainz from July 29 to August 3, 2013. The Lattice 2013 symposium will provide physicists from around the world with the opportunity to obtain information and conduct discussions on the latest developments in lattice field theory. The theory, also known as lattice gauge theory, predicts the properties of hadrons, which include protons and neutrons for example. "In addition to the latest findings relating to the properties of hadrons, at the Lattice 2013 symposium we will also be looking at the simulations used to investigate the recently discovered Higgs boson and the consequences regarding the stability of our universe," announced Professor Hartmut Wittig of the symposium's organization team. 

The Lattice Symposium is the world's most important international conference on lattice field theory. It originated in the 1980s and has since been held annually, most recently in 2012 in Cairns, Australia. With more than 500 participants, Lattice 2013 will be the largest event in the history of the symposium. "It underlines the significant role played by the Mainz working groups in this important area of theoretical particle physics," said Wittig. Theoretical physics in Mainz has recently received a huge boost following the foundation of the Helmholtz Institute Mainz (HIM) in 2009 and, in particular, as a result of the establishment of the PRISMA Cluster of Excellence last year. In addition to providing an overview of the latest developments in lattice gauge theory research, the symposium will also provide the opportunity to present the extraordinary research opportunities at Mainz to an international audience of scientists.

From the point of view of the external symposium participants, the availability of super computers in Mainz that are dedicated to lattice gauge theory calculations is particularly attractive. The planned extension and upgrading of the computer facilities by the Helmholtz Institute and the PRISMA Cluster of Excellence will further enhance the appeal of the working environment.

State Secretary Vera Reiß of the Rhineland-Palatinate Ministry of Education, Science, Continuing Education, and Culture and University President Professor Georg Krausch will be present at the official opening ceremony for the symposium on Monday, July 29, 2013. Twenty-five plenary sessions and more than 400 presentations will provide an extensive overview of the current state of research. The Kenneth Wilson Award will be given to a young researcher during the symposium. The award has been named after the recently deceased Nobel Prize laureate Kenneth G. Wilson, who established lattice field theory in the 1970s.

The lattice field theory attempts to predict the properties of hadrons with the help of computer simulations. The theory of Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) describes the interplay of forces among quarks. A mathematically rigorous treatment is provided by the lattice field theory formulation, where the quarks are distributed at the points of a space-time lattice, similarly to the ions in a crystal. Calculating the properties of hadrons proceeds by employing numerical simulation techniques and the fastest available supercomputers. During the Lattice 2013 conference, technical issues will thus also be considered, such as the improvement of simulation algorithms and the development of new computer hardware.

The symposium is receiving generous financial support from the businesses d-fine, Megware, and NVIDIA along with the German Research Foundation (DFG), the Helmholtz Institute Mainz (HIM), the PRISMA Cluster of Excellence, the Research Center 'Elementary Forces and Mathematical Foundations,' the EU research network HP3, and the Helmholtz International Center for FAIR. This support will also be used to ensure that doctoral candidates and scientists from the less wealthy nations can attend.