Cottrell Scholar Awards - 2015
Unraveling Quantum Fluctuations in Charge and Energy Transport
Computer modeling and simulation are employed to predict the behavior of complex systems in everything from weather forecasting to battlefield dynamics, finance and aviation. But research scientists generally have done the most to advance the accuracy and reliability of this increasingly important tool.
For example, Thomas Markland, assistant professor of chemistry at Stanford University, is using Cottrell Scholar funding to develop theoretical and simulation approaches to explain effects observed in the classical and quantum dynamics of chemical systems.
Markland’s work is focused on creating models and simulations of quantum fluctuations in electron charge and energy transport in highly complex systems ranging from enzyme catalysis, atmospheric isotope separation, and proton transfer at catalytic interfaces.
If successful his work could have important implications for modeling a vast number of chemical reactions, in areas ranging from materials science to biology.
Markland is also using some of his Cottrell Scholar funding to improve ways to use computer models for molecular visualization and simulation in undergraduate and graduate teaching at Stanford, including extending these sophisticated teaching tools to freshman courses.