Immersive Online Semiconductor Education and Workforce Development with Broad Academic Adoption

By Gerhard Klimeck1; Daniel Mejia1; Alejandro Strachan1; Lynn Zentner1; Michael Zentner2

1. Network for Computational Nanotechnology, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 2. Sustainable Scientific Software, San Diego Supercomputer Center, La Jolla, CA

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Over 150,000 nanoHUB users have run over 7 million simulations in browsers. Most nanoHUB apps deal with semiconductor device and materials modeling. These apps provide very simple and intuitive interfaces to community codes that are hard to install, operate, and to maintain even for experts. As such nanoHUB created the first end-to-end scientific cloud enabling users to focus on solving problems rather than installing and maintaining software. Any portal provides access, installation, and compute cycles, however, usability is most often neglected. Most scientific tools focus on solving “any” simulation problem in a specific problem range. Such comprehensiveness makes these tools usable by experts only, typically after intensive training. nanoHUB has instead focused on delivering a spectrum of apps that individually have a limited capability compared to the underlying toolset, but as a whole set cover a vast swath of problems. The results are stunning. Our user analytics prove that over half of the simulation users participate in structured education through homework/project assignments. We can identify classroom sizes and detailed tool usage [1,2]. We can begin to build mind-maps of design explorations and assess depth of explorations for individuals and classes. While parts of academia has struggled to innovate curricula we have measured the median first-time app insertion into a class to be less than six months. Over 180 institutions have utilized nanoHUB in their curriculum innovation in over 5,000 classes. 2 million nanoHUB visitors explore lectures and tutorials annually. With such a community presence we believe nanoHUB is the platform of choice to deliver online modeling, simulation, virtual environments, and lectures for the US initiative on workforce development.


  1. Krishna Madhavan, Michael Zentner, Gerhard Klimeck, "Learning and research in the cloud", Nature Nanotechnology 8, 786–789 (2013)
  2. TEDx Talk, Klimeck, “Mythbusting Scientific Knowledge Transfer with”,

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  • Gerhard Klimeck, Daniel Mejia, Alejandro Strachan, Lynn Zentner, Michael Zentner (2022), " Immersive Online Semiconductor Education and Workforce Development with Broad Academic Adoption,"

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