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PhD in Computer Arithmetic and Numerical Analysis


Key facts

Type of research degree
Application deadline
Thursday 6 June 2024
Project start date
Tuesday 1 October 2024
Country eligibility
UK only
Source of funding
University of Leeds
Dr Mantas Mikaitis
School of Computing
<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Summary</h2>

In 1985 a floating-point standard has been introduced, which, among multiple things, defined a set of required and recommended arithmetic operations and mathematical functions. It is the most important standard in the history of computing. Most computer processors and mathematical libraries adopted the standard, which in turn improved reproducibility between different versions of hardware or even between hardware from different vendors.<br /> <br /> For decades the behaviour of 64-bit (double precision) and 32-bit (single precision) arithmetic has been relatively stable and predictable, with software developers being confident in achieving bit reproducibility in most cases. Today the TOP500 supercomputer list contains about 160 machines with NVIDIA or AMD vector and matrix arithmetic operations, which diverge from the IEEE 754. Furthermore, rounding methods that are not standard, such as stochastic rounding, are being included in hardware: Graphcore IPU, Amazon Trainium, and Tesla Dojo chips. Most of the low precision arithmetic, despite being introduced for machine learning, is used in scientific computing in general. Therefore, it is important to understand the effects of this non-standard hardware on applications and develop approaches to best utilize it.<br /> <br /> Prospective PhD researchers will work on developing methods to understand non-standard low- and mixed-precision hardware and on numerically accurate algorithms that utilize the hardware to gain speed up.<br /> <br /> New postgraduate researchers will become members of Leeds Mathematical Software and Hardware lab, with opportunities to work alongside and communicate with other postgraduate researchers and academics of the Visualisation and Computer Graphics, Scientific Computation, Distributed Systems and Services, and other groups within the School.<br /> <br /> Specific topics/projects within this general area will be tailored to individual interests and skills. Individual projects can be focused on software, hardware, or mathematical study, with possibilities for overlap. Please feel free to contact the main supervisor informally with your CV and a short list of interests for a discussion.

<h2 class="heading">How to apply</h2>

<p>Formal applications for research degree study should be made online through the&nbsp;<a href="">University&#39;s website</a>. Please state clearly in the Planned Course of Study section that you are applying for <em><strong>PHD Computing</strong></em> and in the research information section&nbsp;that the research degree you wish to be considered for is <em><strong>PhD in Computer Arithmetic and Numerical Analysis</strong></em>&nbsp;as well as <a href="">Dr Mantas Mikaitis</a>&nbsp;as your proposed supervisor. Please state clearly in the Finance section that the funding source you are applying for is&nbsp;<strong><em>School of Computing Studentship.</em></strong></p> <p>If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence that you meet the University&#39;s minimum English language requirements (below).</p> <p><em>As an international research-intensive university, we welcome students from all walks of life and from across the world. We foster an inclusive environment where all can flourish and prosper, and we are proud of our strong commitment to student education. Across all Faculties we are dedicated to diversifying our community and we welcome the unique contributions that individuals can bring, and particularly encourage applications from, but not limited to Black, Asian, people who belong to a minority ethnic community, people who identify as LGBT+ and people with disabilities. Applicants will always be selected based on merit and ability.</em></p> <p class="MsoNoSpacing">Applications will be considered on an ongoing basis. &nbsp;Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the supervisors for an informal discussion before making a formal application. &nbsp;We also advise that you apply at the earliest opportunity as the application and selection process may close early, should we receive a sufficient number of applications or that a suitable candidate is appointed.</p> <p>Please note that you must provide the following documents in support of your application by the closing date of&nbsp; 6 June 2024:</p> <ul> <li>Full Transcripts of all degree study or if in final year of study, full transcripts to date</li> <li>Personal Statement outlining your interest in the project</li> <li>CV</li> </ul>

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">Entry requirements</h2>

Applicants to research degree programmes should normally have at least a first class or an upper second class British Bachelors Honours degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate discipline. The criteria for entry for some research degrees may be higher, for example, several faculties, also require a Masters degree. Applicants are advised to check with the relevant School prior to making an application. Applicants who are uncertain about the requirements for a particular research degree are advised to contact the School or Graduate School prior to making an application.

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">English language requirements</h2>

The minimum English language entry requirement for research postgraduate research study is an IELTS of 6.5 overall with at least 6.5 in writing and 6.0 in reading, listening and speaking)or equivalent. The test must be dated within two years of the start date of the course in order to be valid. Some schools and faculties have a higher requirement.

<h2 class="heading">Funding on offer</h2>

<p class="MsoNoSpacing">A highly competitive School of Computing Studentship consisting of the award of fees at the UK fee rate with a tax-free maintenance grant of &pound;19,237 for 3.5 years.</p> <p>This opportunity is open to UK applicants only. All candidates will be placed into the School of Computing Studentship Competition and selection is based on academic merit.<br /> <br /> Please refer to the&nbsp;<a href="">UKCISA</a>&nbsp;website for&nbsp;information regarding Fee Status for Non-UK Nationals.</p>

<h2 class="heading">Contact details</h2>

<p>For further information about this project, please contact Dr Mantas Mikaitis by email to&nbsp;<a href=""></a>.</p> <p>For further information about your application, please contact Doctoral College Admissions by email to&nbsp;<a href=""></a></p>