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RIKEN-Vancouver Joint Workshop on Quantum Computing was held on August 24-25, 2021

RIKEN-Vancouver Joint Workshop on Quantum Computing was held online on August 24-25. The main aim of this workshop is that the quantum people in RIKEN (iTHEMS and RQC) and Vancouver (Quantum BC) get together online to discuss scientific activities and explore future collaborations. There were altogether 164 registrations (90 from Japan, 62 from Canada and 12 from other countries). 12 scientific talks were presented together with 3 introduction to iTHEMS, RQC and Quantum BC. From iTHEMS, Jason Chang, Etsuko Itou, and Takumi Doi gave talks respectively on the Schroedinger equation, the U(1) gauge theory and combinatorial optimization. After each session, there were one-hour breakout sessions, so that people can ask further questions to the speakers, which worked very well. The workshop was an excellent first step toward a close tie between RIKEN quantum activities and Vancouver quantum activities.


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Nihon Keizai Shimbun: Utilizing the Power of Quantum Computers in Combination

Dr. Hirotaka Irie (iTHEMS Visiting Scientist (Industry)) was interviewed in the Nihon Keizai Shimbun. He talks about the "hybrid type" that combines the best parts of conventional computers and quantum computers. Please see the related link for details.


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iTHEMS Science Outreach Workshop 2021 was held on July 11-12, 2021

On July 11 and 12, we had Journalist in Residence Workshop 2021 on Zoom. This year as last year, Tambara Institute of Mathematical Sciences of the University of Tokyo is closed because of COVID-19 and we again organized it on Zoom. The participants included more than 20 journalists, more than 20 participants from RIKEN and 10 from universities. 9 iTHEMS members mainly explained their working field and recent important achievements to the nonspecialists. There were 24 talks in total in a variety of fields. The discussion among the participants continued with joy in the evening of July 11 in ZOOM. We hope to organize it next year, in principle face to face and including remote participants by online.


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The work of a research group, including Dr. Maria Dainotti and Enrico Rinaldi, has been featured in several institutional press releases and websites

The work of a research group, including Dr. Maria Dainotti and Enrico Rinaldi, has been featured in several institutional press releases and websites. One of the most famous open problems of modern cosmology is the Hubble constant (H0) tension. This consists in the discrepancy (>4 sigma) between the values of H0 measured with the late universe local probes, namely the Supernovae Ia (SNe Ia), and the early universe observations, the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) radiation. With our investigation we found that a slow evolution with redshift is present in this constant thus allowing to alleviate this discrepancy. The study is published in ApJ. The investigation started when Dr. Maria Dainotti (now Assistant Professor at NAOJ) and Enrico Rinaldi (now Research Fellow at Michigan University) were Senior Research Scientist and Visiting Scientist both at iTHEMS, respectively. See related links for details.


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Event to celebrate the publication of "The Future of Useless Research was held on April 28, 2021

On April 28, 2021, an online event "Ai Nishida x Tetsuo Hatsuda x Sayaka Oki x Ryosuke Shibato: What We Need to Talk About Now for a Happy Relationship between Researchers and Citizens" was held at B&B, a bookstore in Shimokitazawa. The event was held to celebrate the publication of "The Future of Useless Research," which was released on April 14. For details, please see the related link.


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The iTHEMS x academist online public event was held on April 18, 2021

Following last year’s precedent, iTHEMS held an online lecture event for the general public with the help of Academist Inc., on April 18th, 2021. The event was planned as an alternative for the lectures at RIKEN’s annual open house. The event was started by Kanato Goto with his talk on Blackhole and its information problem. His compelling narrative evoked a lot of questions from high school students; some of them were very sharp. Next, Jeffery Fawcett talked about genome science. Among other topics he studied, he also mentioned the mutation of COVID-19 virus. During the lunch break, Program Director Hatsuda talked with Mr. Shibato from Academist about related books, the exhibition of Black Hole Recorder at Miraikan, and the attempts with RIKEN SUURI. In the afternoon, Sugiura-san talked about the supercomputers and the analysis of subatomic physics, followed by Naomi Tsuji's talk on supernovae and their remnants. The talk included several polls from the audience. Keita Mikami concluded the event with his talk on Mathematics, in particular inequality and differential equations. All the talks were compered by Ms. Michibayashi from Academist; Her facilitation with a wit kept the talks accessible even to high school students. The event was viewed by as many as more than three hundred audiences at one time.


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iTHEMS Starter Meeting for FY 2021 on April 9, 2021

iTHEMS officially kicked off its activity for FY 2021 by the iTHEMS Starter Meeting for FY 2021, on April 9th 2021. The meeting was held over Zoom as last year's meeting. Over sixty iTHEMS members gathered together as well as several frequent visitors and colleagues from other institute, and introduced themselves to other members.


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New faces in April 2021

April is the season when we have new faces. Yesterday, 10 people have joined us. Welcome to iTHEMS and let's have fun in science together!


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Message from the Director at the end of FY2020

I would like to thank all the iTHEMS members and iTHEMS supporting staff for your great efforts to keep iTHEMS very active during FY2020 even under the Covid-19. Our iTHEMS mission is very simple. Good science under the environment of interdisciplinary interactions: "A+B --> A*, A+ B --> B*, A+B --> C" are all in line with this mission. We will have many newcomers joining iTHEMS from FY2021, and let us keep moving forward without boundaries. Now, I would like to congratulate the two iTHEMS students: Toshihiro Ota (student trainee from Osaka Univ.) and Keisuke Fujii (student trainee from Tokyo Institute of Technology) who successfully defended their Ph.D. and are going to graduate from their Universities and from iTHEMS. I hope you have enjoyed your stay in iTHEMS and let us keep in touch for further interactions. Last but not the least, I would like to thank our assistant Izumi Nagasawa who has made tremendous support for the web page, seminars, colloquiums etc and is leaving iTHEMS at the end of this March. Although we could not see her so frequently in person under Covid-19 situation, she has been really helping our activities from behind. We send her our heartfelt gratitude.


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Exhibition of "Black Hole Recorder"

At the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Miraikan) located in Tokyo, iTHEMS exhibition of "Black Hole Recorder" was held last week (March 14-15, March 17-21). Details of this outreach activity (Black Hole Recorder) and the general concept behind (UselessPrototyping Studio) can be seen from the URLs below.


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The annual in-house gathering entitled iTHEMS NOW and NEXT FY2020 was held on March 11th via zoom. The gathering is the occasion we share the current status and future perspectives on our research and organization. In the morning, keynote overview talks were given by Takashi Okada, Hiroyasu Miyazaki, Akinori Tanaka, and Ching-Kai Chiu, followed by the interdisciplinary talk which Don Warren and Catherine Beauchemin jointly presented. During subsequent lunchtime, a special session on the proper practices in conducting scientific researches was taken place. In the session, the participants discussed their research practices in small groups and later shared their discussions with all. The afternoon session was devoted to the progress reports from the working groups and the study groups. This time, we observed a moment of silence in honor of those affected by the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami during these presentations since it just marked precisely ten years from the calamity. Program Director Hatsuda's remarks concluded the gathering.


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Biology and mathematics: What it would be like to be crazy about both

Dr. Ryosuke Iritani (Research Scientist, iTHEMS) writes frankly on the website SURI-JOSHI about why he chose his current field. Don't miss it!


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Report on the online discussion, "The Usefulness of 'Useless' Knowledge"

On August 22 last year, academist.Inc, and RIKEN iTHEMS held an online discussion entitled "Tetsuo Hatsuda × Yoshinori Ohsumi × Sayaka Oki Online Discussion: The Usefulness of 'Useless' Knowledge" with the aim of discussing the future of basic science research. Please refer to the RELATED LINKS for the online discussion of the day.


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Dr. Ozawa’s interview published in Israeli magazine “Epoch”

The Israeli popular magazine “Epoch” has featured Dr. Tomoki Ozawa, AIMR Junior Principal Investigator, in its December 2020 issue. The feature article describes his research on synthetic dimensions. Although we live in a three-dimensional space, scientists can now “artificially” create and study the equivalent of dimensions, which is different from ordinary ones. Dr. Ozawa uses “spin” of an atom as an example of a synthetic dimension. By using spin degrees of freedom as an additional dimension, it is possible to study higher dimensional physical phenomena, such as the four-dimensional quantum Hall effect. The article was published for the general public focusing on cutting-edge research on higher dimensions, also discussing their relations to science-fiction like parallel universe. The article contains an easy-to-follow description of the new idea of synthetic dimensions, which is accessible to general readers. We expect that the studies on synthetic dimensions to have impacts in a variety of fields, ranging from condensed matter physics to high-energy physics.


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Season's Greetings from Dr. Tetsuo Hatsuda, iTHEMS Director

Season's Greetings and Best Wishes for the New Year Thank you very much for sharing the joys of excellent science as well as your patience under COVID-19 during 2020. We wish you a good holiday season and a safe new year 2021 with happiness, prosperity, and novel scientific perspectives. Tetsuo Hatsuda, iTHEMS Director


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"Do you really know what the black hole is?" was held on December 6, 2020

The academist event "Do you really know what the black hole is?" was held on December 6 via YouTube, and iTHEMS members Shigehiro Nagataki (Deputy Program Director), Yoshiyuki Inoue (Senior Visiting Scientist), and Yuki Yokokura (Senior Research Scientist) gave an easy-to-understand explanation of how black holes are born, how to search for black holes, and the inner workings of black holes, mentioning the achievements of the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physics. Please check out the video from RELATED LINKS below.


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Farewell message from Dr. Martin Skrodzki

When my scholarship program first notified me that I would be able to spend a year, working in the RIKEN iTHEMS program, I was extremely happy for this great interdisciplinary and intercultural opportunity. Now, this year has ended and I will return to Germany to continue my research there and possibly at other locations in Europe. I arrived at RIKEN iTHEMS on January 20. While I expected the year to be very exciting, I did not at all imagine what 2020 had in store for all of us. After my first talk in the math seminar, we went to an Izakaya and had a Nomikai there. From the current perspective, this appears quite unreal to me. The Covid-19 pandemic caused this year to be run quite different from any other year. We all had to get used to working from home, working online, and even enjoying each other’s company during online coffee as well as online parties. Despite these restrictions, I tremendously enjoyed my stay in Wako and in Japan in general. Several aspects at iTHEMS contribute to a very friendly and positive atmosphere in the program. For instance, the coffee afternoons were a great way throughout my first couple of weeks to get to know many members of the workgroup. Also the all-hands coffee meetings on Friday are a great installment to stay in touch with each other. Furthermore, the dedicated math seminars were great for me to get new input, learn new mathematics, and chat with the colleagues. The organizers of the math seminar, but also all other chairs and the speakers, made the seminars very enjoyable events. Aside from these events, I was very happy to pursue my own research projects. As I am in the first phase of my postdoctoral career, this was a great opportunity to sharpen my research foci. Thus, I would like to close by thanking everyone for making my stay at RIKEN iTHEMS as enjoyable as it was. Once the global situation has settled down, I would love to return for a short visit or even another extended research stay. Let’s stay in touch!


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Coffee Meeting on October 9, 2020

At the weekly coffee meeting on October 9th (Fri.), Dr. Jeremy Riousset (Florida Institute of Technology) gave a nice description on the properties of "Planetary lightning". After his talk, Dr. Shigehiro Nagataki (Deputy Program Director, iTHEMS) gave an explanation on this year's Nobel Prize in Physics "the discovery that black hole formation is a robust prediction of the general theory of relativity”.


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Farewell message from Dr. Genki Ouchi

Hello. I am Genki Ouchi, a special postdoctoral researcher in iTHEMS. I am leaving iTHEMS and moving to graduate school of mathematics, Nagoya university as an assistant professor. I joined iTHEMS on April 2018. Since then, it has been two and a half years. I learned a lot of things from iTHEMS. Before I came to iTHEMS, I was just an “algebraic geometer”. I studied only algebraic geometry and related topics. After joining iTHEMS, I got opportunities to learn other topics in mathematical science. Especially, I study network science with mathematicians, physicists and network scientists now. With an experience at iTHEMS, I become a “mathematician”. I wish that interdisciplinary activities in iTHEMS bear fruit over the long run. I would like to thank all iTHEMS members for your kind support and help. I am looking forward to seeing you again.


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Farewell message from Dr. Kenta Sato

Hello. I am Kenta Sato, a Special Postdoctral Resercher at iTHEMS. I am moving to Kyusyu University as an assistant professor. It is a great pleasure for me to spend one and a half years at iTHEMS because I have been stimulated by the open atmosphere of iTHEMS and by the energetic activities of each member. It helps me to broaden my perspective. I would like to say thanks to everyone in iTHEMS. I am looking forward to seeing the successful development of iTHEMS in the future.


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Farewell message from Dr. Yoshiyuki Inoue

Hello colleagues. I am Yoshiyuki Inoue, a senior research scientist here at iTHEMS. I am leaving iTHEMS and joining Osaka University as an associate professor. It has been almost three years since I came here. I would like to thank all the iTHEMS friends for your kind support and help, especially Hatsuda-san, Tada-san, and assistants. The open research atmosphere allowed me to expand my research area a lot, e.g., collaboration with other RIKEN researchers. I believe the interdisciplinary and academic freedom mind in iTHEMS is essential for future research. I will bring and spread this iTHEMS spirit in Osaka. Even after moving to Osaka, I will keep visiting our precious research place, iTHEMS (the coffee room, maybe?). I wish future success of iTHEMS research activity.


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Dr. Jason Chang was ranked in the list of the most downloaded physics papers published in Scientific Reports in 2019

It is our great pleasure to inform you that the paper on quantum annealing by our iTHEMS colleague, Jason Chang, was ranked No.14 of the most downloaded physics papers published in Scientific Reports in 2019.


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Anew Calculation of Penguin Pooing Pressure by Hiroyuki Tajima

As posted in the Ig Nobel Prize web page, our iTHEMS friend Hiroyuki Tajima (Kochi Univ., former member of RIKEN Nishina Center) has published an interesting work "Projectile Trajectory of Penguin’s Faeces and Rectal Pressure Revisited" with Fumiya Fujisawa (Katsurahama Aquarium). Find how the gauge/gravity duality in particle physics is useful to find out the incredible power of penguin’s rectum!


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iTHEMS Science Outreach Workshop 2020 was held on July 3 and 4

On July 3 and 4, we had Journalist in Residence Workshop 2020 on Zoom. It had been planned to be held at Tambara Institute of Mathematical Sciences of the University of Tokyo as in a same way as May 31 - June 3 of the last year 2019. This year, Tambara Institute is closed because of COVID-19 but we organized it on Zoom. There were in fact much more participants than last year and those living in US also participated in the meeting. The participants included 14 journalists and 17 participants from RIKEN, 9 from universities and 2 from others. 7 iTHEMS members mainly explained their working field and recent important achievements to the nonspecialists. There were 24 talks in total in a variety of fields. The discussion among the participants continued with joy in the evening of July 3 even in ZOOM. If we organize next year, it will be necessary to include online participants.


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Current status of training and co-creation -- Researcher thinking and technology required for innovative human resources

The CNET Japan Live 2020 held on February 19, various performances talk about the theme of "Innovation indispensable for corporate growth". Mr. Hiroyasu Kodama at G's ACADEMY and Dr. Tsukasa Tada at Interdisciplinary Theoretical and Mathematical Sciences Program (iTHEMS) in RIKEN are trying to create and nurture innovators and work on co-creation with companies. A panel discussion entitled “Developing and co-creating innovators” was held.


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Coffee Meeting with zoom streaming on April 3, 2020

At the weekly coffee meeting on April.3 (Fri.), Haoning He (ABBL) gave a nice explanation of "Multi-meesenger Search for sources of high energy neutrino". Almost 40 member of iTHEMS accessed on the virtual meeting.


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Coffee Meeting with zoom streaming on March 27, 2020

On March 27 (the last Friday in FY2019), the first zoom coffee meeting in iTHEMS was held. Many iTHEMS colleagues have connected virtually to the iTHEMS common room. Takemasa Miyoshi gave a 15 min. talk on SIR model of epidemics followed by 1 min. farewell speeches by the people who graduated iTHEMS and/or QHP lab. at the end of FY2019. From FY2020, all the iTHEMS coffee meetings and colloquiums will be held only through zoom for a while to suppress the physical interactions among researchers and at the same time to increase their virtual interactions.


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Farewell messages to the colleagues leaving iTHEMS from Tetsuo Hatsuda

I would like to congratulate iTHEMS colleagues who are moving to other places from April 1, 2020. Masato Taki (-> Rikkyo Univ.) Yosuke Kubota (-> Shinshu Univ.) Susumu Inoue (-> RIKEN ABBL) Hokuto Konno (-> Univ. Tokyo) Yoshimasa Hidaka (-> KEK) Koya Sakakibara (-> Okayama U. of Science) Shinya Gongyo (-> DENSO IT Lab.). Also I would like to thank Atsushi Mochizuki (Kyoto Univ.), who is one of the founding members of iTHEMS, for his long standing contributions. He will step down as an iTHEMS Deputy Director and will serve for iTHEMS Senior Research Scientist from FY2020. Last but not the least, I would like to thank Motoko Kotani (RIKEN Executive Director) who has served for iTHEMS Scientific Advisor and will move to Tohoku Univ. from April 1, 2020. I wish you all have great success in new places! with best regards, Tetsuo


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Workshop on Communication for Interdisciplinary Collaboration

On January 28th, iTHEMS member Don Warren co-hosted a workshop on Communication for Interdisciplinary Collaboration. The goals of this workshop were (1) to learn how to communicate with people who do not study the same topic you do, and (2) to practice explaining your work so that a non-expert can decide if they want to join your project. The workshop was open to all RIKEN staff in all fields and positions, and turnout was very good: scientists from multiple centers attended, as did several non-research staff. Everyone who attended learned two key points to make cross-discipline communication easier and more productive. First, listen actively when someone is talking about their work to you; don’t fixate on the first interesting thing and stop listening to the rest of their explanation. Second, K.I.S.S.—keep it short and simple! (It is easy to talk about what to do, but it was much harder to practice it during the workshop.) The workshop facilitator was Christiane Brew, a performer and trainer who uses techniques from improvisation to encourage open discussion, deep listening, and clear “pitching”. This was the second of two workshops organized in FY2019 by Don and Amanda Alvarez of CBS. Support for the workshop came from the RIKEN Collaboration Seed fund. If this workshop is repeated next year, please consider joining and practicing your communication skills so you will be ready to start on your next interdisciplinary collaboration.


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Summary of interdisciplinary workshop "Present and Future of the Quantum Computing (QC)"

Interdisciplinary workshop "Present and Future of the Quantum Computing (QC)" hosted by MEXT and sponsored by iTHEMS and CEMS was held on Jan.29, 2020 at RIKEN Suzuki Umetaro Hall. There were more than 170 people got together from academia, industries and publishers. For the people who could not enter the hall, the talks were also broadcasted to the iTHEMS room 160. The scientific session was started with a review talk on the history of quantum-bit researches by Yasunobu Nakamura (CEMS). It was then followed by 11 talks which covered wide topics ranging from the QC architecture development to QC algorithms. The very last talk was given by our iTHEMS colleague, Jason Chang (iTHEMS/UCB), who discussed the adiabatic quantum computing and possible near-term engineering applications on the basis of his recent QC works. A poster session with about 30 posters from many different areas of science was also held with very lively discussions, especially among young researchers. Since the meeting was so successful to provide a platform for the researchers interested in this growing field of QC, we will definitely have the 2nd meeting in the near future.


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Farewell note from Dr. Tomoki Ozawa

Hello. My name is Tomoki Ozawa. I am a senior research scientist at RIKEN iTHEMS. As of February, I am leaving iTHEMS and moving to Advanced Institute for Materials Science (AIMR) in Tohoku University, Sendai, to start my own group as an associate professor. I joined iTHEMS on April 2018; I cannot believe that it has already been almost two years. Time really flies like an arrow. Before joining iTHEMS, my research career has been developed abroad (US, Italy, Belgium), and although I am a native of Japan, iTHEMS is the first Japanese affiliation I obtained as a researcher. Before coming back to Japan, I had always been worried if I could be accepted to the Japanese academic community. After joining iTHEMS, I learned that my worries were needless. I was surprised by the welcoming atmosphere of iTHEMS, and even though I was the only condensed matter physicist in iTHEMS, I could easily find somebody to discuss in the iTHEMS coffee room. What helped me even more to place myself in Japan were the various satellite offices of iTHEMS in (and also outside) Japan. These satellite offices made it easy for me to visit and know what is going on in various other places in Japan. After spending almost two years in iTHEMS, although I am still constantly surprised by cultural differences between Japan and other places I have been, I feel that I have comfortably become a part of the academic community in Japan. In terms of research, what was great being in iTHEMS was that I could do whatever research I wanted to do, without any pressure on the selection of topic or to report what I am doing to my boss. I really appreciated the academic freedom here. I am also starting to build collaborations in Japan. The new collaborations I am building are quite interdisciplinary (including atomic physics, photonics, and even biophysics), thanks to the wide scope of interests of people in iTHEMS. It has been a real pleasure to spend time in the beginning period of iTHEMS, and I am sure that iTHEMS will flourish even more in the coming years. AIMR has a satellite office of iTHEMS, and I expect to maintain active interactions with iTHEMS after I move to AIMR. I will also most likely come to iTHEMS offices (perhaps the coffee room in Wako) from time to time, and I am looking forward to seeing the successful development of iTHEMS in the future.


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Search for gamma-ray signals from dark matter annihilations in extended dwarf spheroidal galaxies, article on the Astronomical Herald

The importance of the dark matter density distribution in target galaxies is discussed under realistic settings of the future gamma-ray experiment.


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iTHEMS end-of-the-year party, farewell party, and birthday party !

iTHEMS end-of-the-year party + farewell party for Nagisa Hiroshima + birthday party for members who was born in December was held from 15:30- on Dec.13, 2019. Before the start of the party, Nagisa who is leaving iTHEMS to become an assistant prof. at Toyama Univ. gave a 15 min. talk on the current status of Dark Matter (DM) Search and also on the activities of the iTHEMS DM Working Group. Her final conclusion was that DM would be a key scientific problem related to all iTHEMS Research Cells, i.e. Extreme Universe, Life & Evolution, Future Geometry, and Mathematics & AI. The room was full of researchers who are interested not only in dark matter but also in beautiful cakes, fruits, foods and in interesting conversations. Many thanks for iTHEMS secretaries who prepared for the wonderful party and thanks also to the people who brought sweets from all over the world!


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Report of Young Researcher Association for Biological Rhythms 2019

Young Researcher Association for Biological Rhythms 2019, supported by RIKEN iTHEMS, was held at Kyushu University on December 7-8. In biology, there are many rhythmic phenomena, such as, circadian clocks, cell cycles, metabolic oscillations and so on. This research workshop has been a good opportunity for young researchers to get together and discuss wide field of biological rhythms. There were 6 invited lectures. The invited lectures contained various topics on biological rhythms: insulin oscillations, circadian clocks of insects, chronopharmacology, methylation cycles, mathematical biology, and cyanobacterial circadian clocks. Because these research topics attracted many participants, we enjoyed active discussions until late at night.


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All-RIKEN Workshop on Virtual Reality holds second session

The first All-RIKEN Workshop on Virtual Reality held an introductory session in October. Many visitors came to try out VR and assess whether they could use it for their own research. On Tuesday, November 26, the second session of the workshop took place. iTHEMS members Don Warren and Gilles Ferrand hosted the all-day, hands-on event. The two primary goals were (1) to teach attendees how to use Unity, the engine Gilles and Don use for their own VR demo, and (2) to let them get their own data into a 3-D visualization. In the first part of the day, participants created their own computer game, entirely from scratch. (If you know someone who attended, ask to play their game!) This introduction to game design showed people how Unity works, and prepared everyone for the second half of the schedule. In the second half, they learned about what kinds of data can be visualized in 3-D and in VR. They also got to use a basic visualization kit (developed by Gilles) to explore their own data in 3-D. There was a lot of good discussion about how to present data in a way that works for 3-D and VR -- some formats that work very well on paper do not translate well to 3-D space! By the end of the workshop, attendees had the tools needed to start exploring their own data. Gilles and Don hope that they will continue to think about this, to develop their skills in Unity, and to form a 3-D and VR visualization community at RIKEN.


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Introduction of Hallatschek group and daily activities: Berkeley Report from Dr. T. Okada

Hi, everyone! In this short article, I will write self-introductiton, also about the laboratory I am belonging to at UC Berkeley and also write my daily activities there. My research interest is theoretical biology, including biochemical reactions, biological networks, evolutionary dynamics etc. I am currently working at Hallatschek laboratory as a long-term visitor, and mainly researching on theoretical aspects of evolutionary dynamics there. As a theorist, one of ultimate goals is to predict outcomes of evolution. Since evolutionary processes are very complicated even under well-controlled conditions, this project is very difficult, but, at the same time, very attracting theoretically. Hallatschek lab studies evolutionary biology both experimentally and theoretically. There are approximately 10 members (students and postdocs) in total, and a half of us do evolutionary experiments using microorganisms, such as yeast and E. coli, and a half of us (including me) study theoretical stuff. For now, I have three meetings in the group every week. The attached photo is one of the weekly meeting which I am doing with Jonas (postdoc, left) and Stephan (graduate student, right). I am very satisfied with the scientific atmosphere here, and I really appreciate the support by iTHEMS. Also, I think that in evolutionary biology, there are many topics that are interesting for many mathematicians and physicist, and I am looking forward to interacting iTHEMS members when I come back to Japan.


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International WS "Collaborative Meeting on Supernova Remnants between Japan and USA" was held at RIKEN Wako campus and SUURI-COOL Kyoto

An international WS "Collaborative Meeting on Supernova Remnants between Japan and USA" was held at RIKEN Wako campus (Nov. 7-8, 2019) and SUURI-COOL Kyoto (Nov. 11-12, 2019) with Masaomi Ono (ABBL/iTHEMS), Shiu-Hang Lee (Kyoto Univ.) and Shigehiro Nagataki (ABBL/iTHEMS) as organizers. The aim of this workshop was to bring together experts including young researchers on supernova remnants and other related topics, such as supernovae, progenitor stars, and neutron stars, for active discussion and to initiate possible collaborations among the participants. In both 1st and 2nd weeks, there were about forty participants. Experts from USA mainly on supernova remnants gave excellent talks from both aspects of theories and observations. Not only supernova remnants but also many other related topics were presented by participants from Japan and Taiwan including students. During the workshop, many possible future collaborations were intensively discussed.


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iTHEMS Coffee Meeting continues

Every Friday, we have iTHEMS coffee meeting from 12:30, where somebody is asked to give a 15 min. lecture on a specific topic for non-experts by using our jumbo blackboard. On Oct.25, 2019, Ivan Kostov (CEA-Saclay) gave a 15 min. lecture on integrability in quantum field theory by drawing s multi-particle scattering diagram for elementary particles living in 2 space-time dimensions. On Nov.1, 2019, Pascal Naidon (RIKEN Nishina Center) gave a 15 min. lecture on the quantum physics of Efimov effect by using his handmade Borromean rings (three entangled ribbons which is a classical analogue of the Efimov effect).


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KUIAS-Heidelberg-iTHEMS joint WS was held at SUURI-COOL Kyoto

KUIAS-Heidelberg-iTHEMS joint WS "Mathematical Sciences and Medicine" was held at SUURI-COOL Kyoto on Oct. 10, 2019 with Motomu Tanaka (Heidelberg/KUIAS) and Tetsuo Hatsuda (iTHEMS) as organizers. The main aim of this workshop was to exchange ideas to create new paradigm in clinical medicine with the help of physicists, mathematicians and biologists. After the welcome address by Shigefumi Mori (Director General of KUIAS, Kyoto Univ. and Science Advisor of iTHEMS), there were 10 talks by the physicists, mathematicians and biologists from Heidelberg Univ., Kyoto Univ., Doshisha Univ. and RIKEN. Each talk was very stimulating and created lively discussions under relaxed atmosphere of SUURI-COOL Kyoto Office. To continue the discussions, we decided to have another meeting in the near future with active participation of medical doctors in Kyoto and Heidelberg.


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Two conferences at Berkeley - Berkeley Report from Dr. K.Mikami

MSRI holds a semester program “Microlocal Analysis” in fall 2019. I fortunately attend this program while my stay at University California Berkeley (UCB) via iTHEMS-UCB math young visiting scholar program. There were two conferences on microlocal analysis in the third week of October. From October 14 to 18, there was a conference entitled “Recent Development in Microlocal Analysis”. It consists of 18 talks on various kinds of topics on microlocal analysis by specialists from all over the world. They contain some topics which is very closely related to my research works, such as observability and semiclassical measure. In October 19 and 20, there was a conference entitled “Microlocal Analysis and Spectral Theory: A Conference in Honor of Richard Melrose”. Richard Burt Melrose is an Australian mathematician who is famous for his broad research on microlocal analysis and geometry. The speakers include two fields medalists, Terence Tao and Akshay Venkatesh. Over all, there were around 30 talks(!) in a single week. Though it was a bit tight schedule, all talks were really nice and inspiring. Lastly, it was my great honor to attend these great conferences.


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iTHEMS researchers host All-RIKEN VR Workshop

Virtual reality is a useful tool for exploring and presenting 3-D data because your brain is naturally tuned for interpreting the 3-D world. Experiencing the data in 3-D rather than on a 2-D screen takes advantage of these tunings. And, of course, it makes for a very memorable presentation of data, both to scientists and to the public. iTHEMS researchers Gilles Ferrand and Don Warren hosted an all-RIKEN workshop on virtual reality on October 7. This workshop drew nearly 30 people from RIKEN and beyond. Almost everybody studied something other than astrophysics. Most people were not iTHEMS members. Several were not researchers! Attendees learned about the VR project that Gilles and Don have worked on for two years, and got to explore data using VR headsets. The goal of the workshop was to build a community of researchers with a shared interest in VR. And, as Nathan Shammah demonstrated, any time you put scientists in a room together you can get discussion about their work. We hope that continued discussion of VR leads to more discussion of personal research, and maybe even new interdisciplinary projects! If you missed the first workshop, but would like to join Gilles and Don for the second workshop (a day-long, hands-on experience to learn about the VR demo and teach you how to develop software for VR), send Gilles or Don an email.


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Enrico Rinaldi interviewed by RIKEN Research

RIKEN Research covers an interview with Dr. Enrico Rinaldi. See the article in the Fall issue (page 4 from the following link).


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iTHEMS members are focused on KAGAKUDO 100 BOOKS 2019

iTHEMS members are focused on KAGAKUDO 100 BOOKS 2019. Please see the following link.


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Short Report of Robotics Workshop held at IIAS in Kyoto

Robotics Workshop organized by RIKEN was held on Sep. 12-13 at a beautiful campus of the International Institute for Advanced Studies (IIAS) in Kyoto. Gilles Ferrand (ABBL/iTHEMS) and Tetsuo Hatsuda (iTHEMS) attended the workshop: Gilles gave a talk on "Virtual Reality and Robotics" and also conducted VR demo during the coffee breaks with Tetsuo as his assistant. All the 35 talks during the two days were "graphically recorded" in real time as the one attached for the Gilles case. (Some illustration company in Kyoto came to do this.) Although each coffee break was short (5-10 min), altogether six people could enjoy the VR of the supernova remnant. It was an interesting experience for us to interact with robotics engineers who have rather different way of thinking from the researchers in basic sciences.


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Math-Life Workshop was held at Hokkaido University

Math-Life Workshop, organized by iTHEMS (RIKEN), SACRA (Kyoto U.), AIMR(Tohoku U.) and MSC (Hokkaido U.), was held at Hokkado Univ. on Aug.19-20 with 66 participants. Dr. Ryosuke Iritani and Dr. Shingo Gibo from iTHEMS gave 1-hour invited lectures on mathematical ecology and chronobiology, respectively. Both lectures contain very nice introduction to these subjects followed by their own recent research topics. There were also 6 other lectures by the speakers from Hokkaido Univ., Kyoto Univ., Hiroshima City Univ. and Tohoku Univ. The workshop was very successful with full of stimulating discussions among mathematicians, physicists, biologists and life scientists.


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Japan-Israel Workshop on HEA with Roger Blandford

During 18-23 July, a workshop to bring together experts on High Energy Astrophysics from Japan and Israel was held. The first part (18-19 July) was held in RIKEN Wako, while the second part (22-23 July) was held in RIKEN Kobe IIB. The workshop was supported by iTHEMS. This workshop was motivated by 3 things. One was Roger Blandford, a reviewer of iTHEMS AC, was planning to visit RIKEN Wako during 24-26 for the review. Second was Noemie Globus, who is a visitor of Astrophysical Big Bang Lab. (ABBL), was interested in organizing a meeting between Japan & Israel. She worked well as a Co-Chair of the meeting. Third was Hirotaka Ito (Chair, ABBL) has some collaborators in Israel, including Amir Levinson & Asaf Pe'er. We enjoyed lots of excellent talks both from Japan & Israel. Roger Blandford gave a talk on his interpretation of the black hole shadow image by the even horizon telescope (EHT). We had lots of discussions with Israel people, and we agreed to proceed our collaborations on long/short gamma-ray bursts. We received many emails from Israel people that they enjoyed the workshop and their stay in Japan very much, and some of them proposed to have a second meeting in Israel. Hirotaka Ito & Noemie Glogus worked very well as chairs of organizers. Thanks to them & iTHEMS, the meeting was very successful.


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Report of the workshop on "Math of Jets"

A workshop on "Math of Jets" co-sponsered by RIMS (Kyoto University) and iTHEMS was held from July 29 to 31 at Kyoto University. Researchers from wide scientific fields, such as, planetary atmosphere, astrophysics, quark-gluon plasmas, and so on gave talks. The common keyword for participants are 'jet' and/or 'hydrodynamics'. Since most of participants use numerical hydordynamic or magnetohydordynamic simulations as a tool for their study, some part of discussions are devoted to introduce numerical technique, numerical difficulties and unresolved problems. We enjoyed getting to know research topics and problems in other research fields. At the workshop banquet, one of participants said as a speech "Recently the borders between countries have not been so high but the borders between scientific field have been getting higher and higher, event if they have common language, for example, 'hydrodynamics' like us. We should continue this kind of workshop. Otherwise, we can not understand each other in near future." The workshop was good opportunity to interact with other fields and we hope we will have next meeting in near future.


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iTHEMS Advisory Council (AC) is being held from July 24 (Wed.) through 26 (Fri.)

iTHEMS Advisory Council (AC) is being held from July 24 (Wed.) through 26 (Fri.). On July 25 (Thursday), short talks and poster presentations by iTHEMS researchers have been given, followed by stimulating discussions with the AC members in various different fields (mathematics, physics, astronomy, biology and engineering). Lively discussion continued during the breaks and poster sessions, with beautiful sweets and coffee/tea prepared by iTHEMS assistants. We are very grateful to the AC members who kindly came over to RIKEN Wako Campus to make precious suggestions about science activities and the management of iTHEMS.


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Summary of the 1-day Workshop on Quantum Gravity

What is spacetime? In order to discuss this fundamental question, we held "1-day Workshop on Quantum Gravity" on July 4, 2019. The talk was very varied. First, Yokokura introduced a formulation of black holes as a configuration of quantum fields. Next, Prof. Izumi discussed the relation of S-matrix unitarity and renormalizability in higher-derivative theories. After lunch, Prof. Ho developed a general discussion of the relationship between dynamical horizon and negative energy. Prof. Yoneya began with the origin of Nambu dynamics and introduced an attempt to quantize it with a Hamilton-Jacobi method. Prof. Matsuo discussed M-theory and a mathematical structure behind it. Finally, Prof. Kawai developed a simple model of how the weak scale comes out of the Planck scale. In addition, there was more applications than expected, and the room was a little small. However, the discussion in the physically dense venue was very active as if a concert in a small venue had a stronger feeling of live, and it was a wonderful conference where the enthusiasm of the speakers could be felt directly. And the participants were in a wide range of fields such as elementary particles, relativity and mathematical physics, and over a very wide range of generations, including master's first grader and retired professor. In this way, it was also very meaningful that active discussions were conducted across fields and generations. Now is the time to study quantum gravity with free ideas.


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Workshop on Sine-square deformation and related topics 2019

On July 11th, the workshop entitled "Sine-Square Deformation and related topics 2019," was held at RIKEN Wako Campus. Sine-square deformation (SSD) is a new type of boundary condition at which the coupling constant of the system is spatially modulated. Since its inception, SSD has been studied in various contexts including string theory, condensed matter physics, and quantum field theory. This workshop is the sequel to the workshop previously held at RIKEN two years ago. This time, virtually all the researchers who are actively contributing to the subject attended the workshop.