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Cover of nature journal The Millennium Simulation
The largest N-body simulation ever carried out containing over 10 billion particles, which is helping Virgo scientists further understand the development of the universe Click here to read more

The Millennium Simulation:
The Millennium Simulation is the largest N-Body Simulation ever carried out, containing over 10 billion particles. The simulation was carried out by the Virgo Consortium using a cluster of 512 processors located at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics in Garching, Germany. The simulations took a total of 28 days (~600 hours) of wall clock time, and thus consumed around 343000 hours worth of cpu-time.

Using the information obtained from this simulation it is hoped that scientists working for Virgo and outside groups will be able to make significant advances in our understanding of galaxy formation and cosmology.

The panels below are three snapshots from the millennium simulation at different redshifts. Each of the images shows the same co-moving area, areas with a higher matter density are shown as bright areas where as areas of underdensity are shown darker.

Redshift: 18.3 After some initial expansion the primordial density fluctuations are clearly recognisable

Redshift: 5.7

Redshift: 1.4

Redshift: 0.0 By the present time structures are abundant in the universe manifesting themselves as stars, galaxies and clusters


Click here to see more of the visualizations associated with the project

Click here to read the Durham University Press Release

BBC News article on the Millennium Simulation

Guardian article on the Millennium Simulation,12996,1497195,00.html

Science Daily article on the Millennium Simulation

Associated Articles:

Simulating the joint evolution of quasars, galaxies and their large-scale distribution Volker Springel (1), Simon D. M. White (1), Adrian Jenkins (2), Carlos S. Frenk (2), Naoki Yoshida (3), Liang Gao (1), Julio Navarro (4), Robert Thacker (5), Darren Croton (1), John Helly (2), John A. Peacock (6), Shaun Cole (2), Peter Thomas (7), Hugh Couchman (5), August Evrard (8), Joerg Colberg (9), Frazer Pearce (10) ((1) MPA, (2) Durham, (3) Nagoya, (4) UVic, (5) McMaster, (6) Edinburgh, (7) Sussex, (8) Michigan, (9) Pittsburgh, (10) Nottingham)
Nature 435 (2005) 629-636
Click here to download a PDF version of the article from astro-ph

The many lives of AGN: cooling flows, black holes and the luminosities and colours of galaxies
Darren J. Croton, Volker Springel, Simon D. M. White, G. De Lucia, C. S. Frenk, L. Gao, A. Jenkins, G. Kauffmann, J. F. Navarro, N. Yoshida
MNRAS 365 (2006), 11-28 and MNRAS 367 (2006), 864
Click here to download a PDF version of the article from astro-ph

The formation history of elliptical galaxies
De Lucia, Gabriella; Springel, Volker; White, Simon D. M.; Croton, Darren; Kauffmann, Guinevere MNRAS 366 (2006), 499-509
Click here to download a PDF version of the article from astro-ph

Breaking the hierarchy of galaxy formation
Bower, R.G.; Benson, A.J.; Malbon, R.; Helly, J.C.; Frenk, C.S.; Baugh, C.M.; Cole, S.; Lacey, C.G.
MNRAS 370 (2006), 645-655
Click here to download a PDF version of the article from astro-ph

The hierarchical formation of the brightest cluster galaxies
De Lucia, Gabriella, Blaizot, Jeremy
MNRAS 375 (2007), 2-14
Click here to download a PDF version of the article from astro-ph

THE VIRGO CONSORTIUM Last updated January 08 2009 11:10:24. Designed by Stephen Wilkins, Nigel Metcalfe and Diego Hartasanchez