Edward Seidel is a physicist recognized worldwide for his work on numerical relativity and black holes, as well as in high-performance and grid computing. In 2003, LSU recruited Seidel to lead its investment in the Governor’s Information Technology Initiative, and he became director of LSU’s newly formed Center for Computation & Technology. Seidel served as CCT director from 2003 to 2008. Seidel also is the Floating Point Systems Professor in LSU’s Departments of Physics & Astronomy and Computer Science. In addition to leading the CCT, he helped initiate, and is presently the chief scientist for, the $40 million Louisiana Optical Network Initiative.
In June 2008, the National Science Foundation selected Seidel as its director for the Office of Cyberinfrastructure. Seidel began this position September 1, 2008. He oversees advances in supercomputing, high-speed networking, data storage, and software development on a national level. Seidel retains his faculty positions as well as his affiliation with CCT at LSU, and he frequently returns to the center to advise on research, projects, and other strategic initiatives.
Seidel earned his Ph.D. from Yale University in relativistic astrophysics. Prior to becoming CCT director, Seidel was a professor at the Max-Planck-Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert-Einstein-Institute, or AEI) in Germany from 1996 to 2003. There, Seidel founded and led AEI’s numerical relativity and e-Science groups, which became leading forces worldwide in solving Einstein’s equations using large-scale computers, and in distributed and grid computing. He still maintains a strong affiliation with AEI. LSU and the AEI numerical relativity and computational science groups still work very closely together.
He also was a senior research scientist at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications and associate professor in the Physics Department at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.