Paul Kent

Paul Kent

Contact Details

I am a distinguished research scientist at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). ORNL Staff profile and contact details. LinkedIn Profile.


Model reaction at carbon anode Research is focused on predicting and explaining the properties of materials using computer simulation. Over the last two decades, advances in simulation techniques coupled with increasing computer power have led to several methods able predict physical properties of real materials to a useful accuracy. Moreover, these methods use little or no experimental data, making them especially valuable for the study of new materials and devices. I specialise in the application and development of these so-called "first principles" methods.

Research interests are broadly focused on atomistic materials simulation. Ongoing research projects include:

I direct the Center for Predictive Simulation of Functional Materials. I also lead development of the QMCPACK application for exascale computing as part of the Exascale Computing Project. QMCPACK is a very high performance Quantum Monte Carlo code for computing the electronic structure of atoms, molecules and solids, including metals. QMCPACK is open source and available on GitHub.

I am a member of the Nanotheory Institute at the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences (CNMS) and the Computational Chemical and Materials Science group in the Computational Science and Engineering Division.

I spent three years at NREL with Alex Zunger after completing my PhD with Richard Needs at the University of Cambridge. For several years I worked with Mark Jarrell at the University of Cincinnati working on high-temperature cuprate superconductors. In 2009 I transitioned from JICS/UT Knoxville to ORNL staff.


Professional Service

Recent Talks and Presentations

YBa2Cu3O6 cuprate superconductor

A complete list of presentations is given on a separate page.

Recent Publications

I maintain a complete list of publications, with links to abstracts and online journals on a separate page. There is also a list of publications by subject and RSS feed. .

Alternative lists with citation information are at Thomson Reuters ResearcherID A-6756-2008 , ORCID 0000-0001-5539-4017 and Google Scholar. The latter is generous while the former are incomplete.


Older publications (187 listed)

Postdoctoral positions and job openings

Any available positions will be listed on the ORNL jobs site. Positions are often also advertised via the Psi-K mailing list. Please email for any additional information.

Current Postdocs

Previous Postdocs


Graphics from presentations and publications.


C60 Fullerene

Full online text of my thesis, written in 1999. A postscript file (4.7MB, gzipped) is available.
Comments, questions? Contact Paul Kent.Last updated Friday 10 May 2024.