An island reaches out
On the lovely island of Cyprus in the eastern part of the Mediterranean, I became acquainted with my future PhD fellows from all around the world and various scientific research fields, such as particle physics, condensed matter, fluid dynamics and biophysics. Although they might seem very diverse at first glance the unifying element of these research areas is their compatibility with HPC, high-performance computing. The significance of highly optimised computer algorithms and architectures was also emphasised at a conference at the Cyprus Institute, where the supervisors of the programme presented the main research areas, lattice QCD, turbulent flows and life sciences. Even the education minister of Cyprus was giving a speech about the importance and opportunities this multi-layered PhD programme has got in store for fellows, supervisors and mentors.
During the following days, the individual PhD programmes were finalised with the aid of supervisors and mentors. I myself will be closely working with one of my fellow students, as both our projects are intertwined to some degree. I also got to know the other HPC-LEAP fellows and supervisors more at a dinner with typical Cypriot and Greek specialties.
The meeting concluded with a guided tour through the historic centre of Nicosia, the capital of Cyprus. It was fascinating to have look into the rich history of the city, Byzantines, Venetians, Ottomans and the British have all left their traces (the latter most notably left the rule of driving on the left side of the road). The tour even led to northern side of the city. The culture there is very different from the southern part.
Thus, my work intensive but also relaxing and thought intriguing stay at Nicosia came to an end. Personally, I am looking forward to the next time I have the opportunity to travel back to the Cyprus Institute and pay this sunny island another visit.