Supercomputing Challenge

Kickoff Materials

The Computational Science Process

This class is one hour long. No hands-on work. Get the students to talk with you as much as possible during the class.

Here are files from past years:

The content for these documents was taken mostly from Dick Allen's STI PowerPoint presentation on the subject.

Feel free to use whatever materials you like.

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The Abstract Sessions

The facilitators/instructors/scientists will meet the students in their teams. The students will have copies of their abstracts with them.

The purpose of the session is to make sure the teams have chosen a problem that is suitable for science, has measurable components so that a mathematical model can be developed, and from that a computing solution can be written. The session is secondarily about mentoring teams who have good abstracts and are ready to get started on their project.

There will be computer available for teams to get their abstracts submitted.

Some students will come to this session and need help from scratch. When the abstracts are ready, they, too, can submit their abstracts.

Students whose abstracts are complete can move to computers to begin research or work at tables to plan their timeline, assign tasks to different members of the team, etc. They will learn to use the phpbb bulletin board system to communicate with their teammates. If there are facilitators who are not working with teams to get their abstracts completed it would be great if they could do some mentoring of teams who are ready.

It may be helpful to look at the abstract guidelines and the abstracts that are already up on the Challenge web page - There is also a link on the web page for questions to ask to direct the students: Additionally, links to areas of science and may be helpful for teams still looking for an idea. This guidelines link can be useful, too. We urge the students to step through the flow chart at

You can see which teams have submitted abstract on the abstracts page of the Challenge web site.

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Introduction to Starlogo

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Agent-based modeling with Starlogo

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Math Modeling with Java

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Advanced Class

This class is three hours long.


This brief mini-course will introduce the student to one of the most powerful and oldest numerical methods. Some of the Monte Carlo basics will be used to integrate equations and simulate the random walk of particles (neutrons, gamma-rays) through matter.

Students will manipulate template files written in C. Codes will be compiled with the gcc compiler under the Cygwin environment on MS-Windows PCs.


Some programming experience in one of the following high-level languages:

Mathematical experience:
Basic trig
Simple equations/functions (equation for a circle, natural logarithm, etc.)
Basic statistics (e.g., average, variance, standard error, etc.)

Class Materials:

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Questions? Contact Consult

For questions about the Supercomputing Challenge, contact us at: consult @

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