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Nichols A. Romero

Principal Project Specialist - Computational Science

Computational scientist with over 10 years’ experience designing, developing, and optimizing scientific software (chemistry, climate, material science) for high-performance computing platforms. Five of those years as a group leader in ALCF.


Nichols A. Romero (aka Nick) is a computational scientist with a joint appointment in ALCF. For the first 5 years at Argonne, his effort was focused on technical support of projects on ALCF’s Blue Gene/P (0.5 petaflop/s) and Blue Gene/Q (10 petaflop/s) supercomputers in the area of computational material science. His next 5 years were spent as the technical lead for the ALCF team (Catalysts) that supports ALCF projects in biology, chemistry and materials.

More recently, Nick has been working on three different Exascale Computing Projects in various software engineering roles. For QMCPACK, working on contributing application packages to Spack, the DOE HPC package manager. For E3SM, working on porting a radiation transport code from OpenACC to OpenMP. Lastly, working with the LLVM developers to harden the Flang front-end with respect to DOE Office of Science codes.

Romero obtained a B.S. in Physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1999), and a Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2005). He was a National Research Council post-doctoral fellow at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (2005-2007) and later worked as a Computational Scientist in the High-Performance Computing Modernization Program (20072008) for the Department of Defense. Romero was a postdoc at the ALCF (2008-2010) prior to being promoted to staff.

Research Interests
  • Density Functional Theory (DFT)
  • Quantum Monte Carlo (QMC)
  • Multi-physics methods
  • Parallel dense linear algebra and iterative eigensolvers
  • Performance Portability
  • Massively parallel algorithms and exascale architectures

Substantial experience in Fortran, Python, and management. Software engineering in for scientific codes. Experience with GPU programming with OpenMP and OpenACC.