Computational Physics

By Prof. Apratim Chatterji, Prof. Prasenjit Ghosh   |   IISER Pune
Learners enrolled: 877
This course aims to give the students competence in the methods and techniques of calculations using computers. At the end of the course the student is expected to have a hands on experience in modeling, algorithm development, implementation and calculation of physical quantities of relevance in interacting many body problems in physics. Both quantum and classical computational tools will be introduced.

INTENDED AUDIENCE: Masters students in physics, engineering physics students and scientists interested in quantum and/OR molecular modelling.

PREREQUISITES:          Basic Statistical Physics and quantum mechanics.

Course Status : Completed
Course Type : Elective
Duration : 12 weeks
Category :
  • Physics
Credit Points : 3
Level : Postgraduate
Start Date : 25 Jul 2022
End Date : 14 Oct 2022
Enrollment Ends : 08 Aug 2022
Exam Date : 30 Oct 2022 IST

Note: This exam date is subjected to change based on seat availability. You can check final exam date on your hall ticket.

Page Visits

Course layout

Week 1: Rapid overview of Fortran programming Language
Week 2: Random Number generation and testing, Generation of random numbers with given distribution
Week 3: Numerical Integration: (a) Deterministic: Trapezoidal method & (b) Multi-dimensional Integration
              using stochastic methods.
Week 4: Lattice Monte Carlo simulations using Ising model to understand phase transitions: Metropolis
              algorithm, understanding kinetic barriers, finite size effects, role of thermal fluctuations
Week 5: Metropolis algorithm, understanding kinetic barriers, finite size effects, role of thermal fluctuations;
                Principle of detailed balance, calculating thermodynamic averages
Week 6: Determining transition temperature using Binders cumulant
Week 7: Solving differential equations
Week 8: Linear, non-linear and coupled differential equations
Week 9: Solving differential equations Schrodinger eqn. in Quantum Mechanics with Numerov’s algorithm
                and variational principle.
Week 10: Classical Molecular Dynamics simulations using Lennard-Jones’ potential
Week 11: Classical Molecular Dynamics simulations using Lennard-Jones’ potential
Week 12: Classical Molecular Dynamics simulations using Lennard-Jones’ potential

Books and references

  1. Computer Programing in F90 & 95, V. Rajaraman, PHI learning pvt. Ltd
  2. Numerical Recipes in F90 Cambridge Publishers
  3. Computational Physics by Jos Thijssen (Cambridge UnivPress, 1997)
  1. A first course in Computational Physics, P. L. DeVries and J. Hasbun, John Wiley and Sons. Inc.
  2. Understanding Molecular Simulation, Publisher: Academic Press, Author: Daan Frenkel and Berend Smit.

Instructor bio

Prof. Apratim Chatterji

Prof. Apratim Chatterji has 20 years of research experience in molecular modeling of classical statistical mechanics problems and is active in soft matter research using computational techniques. He joined IISER- Pune in 2009.

Prof. Prasenjit Ghosh

Prof. Prasenjit Ghosh is interested in understanding microscopic properties of materials using first principles methods quantum mechanics and classical mechanics based computational methods. He joined IISER Pune in 2010 and has 16 years of research experience in this field. Both the instructors have taught this course in IISER-Pune for 5 semesters with the same course content as given above. At IISER Pune the course is offered to 4th year BS-MS student, Integrated PhD student and PhD students every year.

Course certificate

The course is free to enroll and learn from. But if you want a certificate, you have to register and write the proctored exam conducted by us in person at any of the designated exam centres.
The exam is optional for a fee of Rs 1000/- (Rupees one thousand only).
Date and Time of Exams: 30 October 2022 Morning session 9am to 12 noon; Afternoon Session 2pm to 5pm.
Registration url: Announcements will be made when the registration form is open for registrations.
The online registration form has to be filled and the certification exam fee needs to be paid. More details will be made available when the exam registration form is published. If there are any changes, it will be mentioned then.
Please check the form for more details on the cities where the exams will be held, the conditions you agree to when you fill the form etc.


Average assignment score = 25% of average of best 8 assignments out of the total 12 assignments given in the course.
Exam score = 75% of the proctored certification exam score out of 100

Final score = Average assignment score + Exam score

YOU WILL BE ELIGIBLE FOR A CERTIFICATE ONLY IF AVERAGE ASSIGNMENT SCORE >=10/25 AND EXAM SCORE >= 30/75. If one of the 2 criteria is not met, you will not get the certificate even if the Final score >= 40/100.

Certificate will have your name, photograph and the score in the final exam with the breakup.It will have the logos of NPTEL and IIT Madras. It will be e-verifiable at nptel.ac.in/noc.

Only the e-certificate will be made available. Hard copies will not be dispatched.

Once again, thanks for your interest in our online courses and certification. Happy learning.

- NPTEL team

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