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Dr. Borunda's Lab

Theoretical Physics

Our research focuses on investigating the properties of materials that have societal impacts. We use Theory and Computation to predict which materials can be candidates for energy production.


The Borunda Research group promotes interdisciplinary education and research in materials science and physics. Group members are involved in programs that engage the future scientific workforce. Along with increasing public awareness and scientific literacy, Dr. Borunda strives in promoting career advancement and broaden participation of the diverse group of scientists involved in our group.


Public Engagement

  • Public lectures by Mario Borunda and colleagues in Oklahoma libraries and in GrandParents University at OSU
  • Talks for science museum audiences
  • Participation in NanoDays at the WONDERtorium

Broadening Participation

We are proud of our recruitment and outreach activities on Oklahoma’s large population of Native American students. The 2010 census revealed a Native American population of Oklahoma that is eight-times that of the country at large, with Oklahoma possessing the highest number of Native American students enrolled in public school systems. Oklahoma ranks 3rd in Native American population and leads the nation in the number of Native Americans that graduate from college. OSU, through student organizations such as SACNAS (Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science)and the OK-LSAMP (Oklahoma-Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation) program, also engage a large number of minority students. Dr. Borunda works with SACNAS (as the faculty advisor for the OSU SACNAS chapter), the National Society for Hispanic Physicists (NSHP), and OK-LSAMP to perform outreach to members minority populations.


Engaging Undergraduates in Research

There are usually few chances for undergraduates to discover the academic culture of graduate research and education and to experience the excitement of interdisciplinary work. As Undergraduate Research Coordinator for the Physics Department, Dr. Borunda provides service to the Physics Department by interacting with undergraduate students who are interested in performing research. The Physics Faculty has provided information on the ongoing research in their research groups which could involve undergraduates. Dr. Borunda strives to pair the interested students with research groups. Additionally, he is directing undergraduates students to apply for research scholarships, provide information on the REU opportunities offered by various programs across the country, and graduate scholarships from agencies such as NSF and the DoE.


Computation facilities/capabilities: Our group has sole access to a 120-core GP-GPU cluster that is housed in the Borunda computational lab. This GP-GPU Cluster is a general-purpose cluster outfitted with graphics processing unit consists of ten compute nodes each equipped with the following:


  • Intel Core i7-3930K Sandy Bridge 3.2 GHZ processor (6-cores and 12 MB cache)
  • 1 TB hard drive + 256 GB solid-state HD
  • 32 GB SDRAM
  • 1 NVIDIA Tesla C2075 GPU card (448 CUDA cores running at 575 MHz and 6 GB RAM), and
  • 1 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 TI GPU card (1344 CUDA cores running at 915 MHz and 3 GB RAM).

Each node has two stand-alone GPUs, our cluster has a total of 17,920 CUDA cores optimized for highly parallelized calculations.


OSU's HPCC Facilities are currently composed of `Cowboy' which is equipped with the following:

  • 252 compute nodes (Intel Xeon E5-2620 “Sandy Bridge” hex core 2.0 GHz CPUs)
  • 2 “fat nodes” each with 256 GB RAM and an NVIDIA Tesla C2075 card (the rest is the same configuration as above)
  • 92 TB of globally accessible high-performance disk provided by three shelves of Panasas ActivStor12
  • Infiniband for message passing
  • Gigabit Ethernet for I/O, and an ethernet management network
  • 15 compute nodes (same configuration as above) each with two Xeon Phi cards (64 cores running at 1.30 GHz and with 16GB RAM) available only to the Fennell and Borunda groups at OSU (Condominium Equipment)

Dr. Borunda is a Co-PI in an NSF-funded MRI project that will keep the supercomputer up to date for the following five years. Group members also have access to the OU Supercomputing Center for Education and Research (OSCER) and the NASA Advanced Supercomputing systems. In 2015, OSCER has been deploying ‘Schooner’, the largest academic supercomputer in Oklahoma history.


This Dell cluster supercomputer has a peak speed of 346.9 TFLOPs (trillions of calculations per second) and consists of:

  • 499 compute nodes
  • 10,180 CPU cores
  • ~23 TB RAM
  • ~450 TB of globally accessible user storage, and
  • Two networks.

Computing capacity consists of:

  • PowerEdge R430 compute nodes (servers)
  • 266 × dual Intel Xeon “Haswell” E5-2650v3 10-core 2.3 GHz
  • 32 GB RAM (all owned by OSCER)
  • PowerEdge R730 compute/accelerator-capable nodes
  • 4 × dual Haswell E5-2650v3 10-core 2.3 GHz
  • 32 GB RAM
  • Dual NVIDIA K20M accelerator cards (3 OSCER, 1 condominium)
  • 12 × dual Haswell E5-2650v3 10-core 2.3 GHz
  • 32 GB RAM
  • Dual Intel Xeon Phi MIC 31S1P accelerator cards (all OSCER)
  • 13 × dual Haswell E5-2650v3 10-core 2.3 GHz
  • 32 GB RAM, no accelerator cards (all OSCER), and 5 × dual Haswell E5-2670v3 12-core 2.3 GHz
  • 64 GB RAM, no accelerator cards (all OSCER)

Storage consists of:

  • Both a large scale, high performance parallel filesystem and
  • Servers full of disk drives (high performance parallel filesystem, global user-accessible: DataDirect Networks Exascaler SFX7700X, 70 SATA 6 TB disk drives, ~305 TB usable) and lower performance servers full of disk drives, global user-accessible (~150 TB usable).
  • The nodes are networked with Infiniband and Ethernet.


We gratefully acknowledge funding from:

  • NSF
    • Major Research Instrumentation Award Number: 153128
    • NSF REU Site (Physics) Award Number: 1757883
  • OSU Office of Vice President for Research—Inverse Design of Advanced Materials for Catalysis
  • Intel—Leveraging Arduino Technology in the physics advanced lab
  • NVIDIA—GPU-Enhanced search of PVs
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