About the Center
The vision of Teller became a reality in the 1970's and 1980's, when computational science began to gather momentum, mainly to uncover the physical behavior of complex systems beyond the reach of conventional theoretical techniques. Two Nobel prizes were awarded for the studies and accomplishments in the field of computational science. In 1998, Walter Kohn and John Pople shared the prize for the development of the density-functional theory and for the development of computational methods in quantum chemistry, respectively. In 2013, Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt, and Arieh Warshel were jointly awarded the prize for the development of multiscale models for complex chemical systems.
The challenges faced by computational science are still larger than the proposed solutions. For instance, we are unable to describe the dynamics of protein folding or the electronic structure of complicated nanoparticles. Or how nanostructures are formed. The description of rare chemical processes in complex environments such as chemical reactions, is also an unsolved problem. The reason stems from the diverse time scales on one hand and from the complex nature of interactions between atoms on the other hand.
Tel Aviv University has hired recently a number of young scientists in the field of computational molecular science and computational materials science. Together with scientists already employed by the University, they constitute a critical mass with the potential to become a world-leading force in this area. To provide a framework for synergetic research between these groups, The Raymond and Beverly Sackler Center for Computational Molecular and Materials Science was established at Tel Aviv University in the Spring of 2015. The Center runs seminars and discussion tables, provides scholarships for excellent young researchers, organizes schools and international conferences, and brings reknown lecturers to Campus.