Data Science in the News

Did you know we have a monthly newsletter? View past volumes and subscribe.

High-performance computing, AI and cognitive simulation helped LLNL conquer fusion ignition

June 21, 2023 - 
For hundreds of LLNL scientists on the design, experimental, and modeling and simulation teams behind inertial confinement fusion (ICF) experiments at the National Ignition Facility, the results of the now-famous Dec. 5, 2022, ignition shot didn’t come as a complete surprise. The “crystal ball” that gave them increased pre-shot confidence in a breakthrough involved a combination of detailed...

Visionary report unveils ambitious roadmap to harness the power of AI in scientific discovery

June 12, 2023 - 
A new report, the product of a series of workshops held in 2022 under the guidance of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science and the National Nuclear Security Administration, lays out a comprehensive vision for the Office of Science and NNSA to expand their work in scientific use of AI by building on existing strengths in world-leading high performance computing systems and data...

Data science meets fusion (VIDEO)

May 30, 2023 - 
LLNL’s historic fusion ignition achievement on December 5, 2022, was the first experiment to ever achieve net energy gain from nuclear fusion. However, the experiment’s result was not actually that surprising. A team leveraging data science techniques developed and used a landmark system for teaching artificial intelligence (AI) to incorporate and better account for different variables and...

LLNL and SambaNova Systems announce additional AI hardware to support Lab’s cognitive simulation efforts

May 23, 2023 - 
LLNL and SambaNova Systems have announced the addition of a spatial data flow accelerator into the Livermore Computing Center, part of an effort to upgrade the Lab’s CogSim program. LLNL will integrate the new hardware to further investigate CogSim approaches combining AI with high-performance computing—and how deep neural network hardware architectures can accelerate traditional physics...

Patent applies machine learning to industrial control systems

May 8, 2023 - 
An industrial control system (ICS) is an automated network of devices that make up a complex industrial process. For example, a large-scale electrical grid may contain thousands of instruments, sensors, and controls that transfer and distribute power, along with computing systems that capture data transmitted across these devices. Monitoring the ICS network for new device connections, device...

Computing codes, simulations helped make ignition possible

April 6, 2023 - 
Harkening back to the genesis of LLNL’s inertial confinement fusion (ICF) program, codes have played an essential role in simulating the complex physical processes that take place in an ICF target and the facets of each experiment that must be nearly perfect. Many of these processes are too complicated, expensive, or even impossible to predict through experiments alone. With only a few...

Skywing: Open-source software aids collaborative autonomy applications

Jan. 25, 2023 - 
A new software developed at LLNL, and known as Skywing, provides domain scientists working to protect the nation’s critical infrastructure with a high-reliability, real-time software platform for collaborative autonomy applications. The U.S. modern critical infrastructure—from the electrical grid that sends power to homes to the pipelines that deliver water and natural gas and the railways...

New HPC4EI project to create 'digital twin' models for aerospace manufacturing

Jan. 19, 2023 - 
A partnership involving LLNL aimed at developing “digital twins” for producing aerospace components is one of six new projects funded under the HPC for Energy Innovation (HPC4EI) initiative, the Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy announced. Sponsored by the HPC4Manufacturing (HPC4Mfg) Program, one of the pillars of HPC4EI, the collaboration between LLNL...

Cognitive simulation supercharges scientific research

Jan. 10, 2023 - 
Computer modeling has been essential to scientific research for more than half a century—since the advent of computers sufficiently powerful to handle modeling’s computational load. Models simulate natural phenomena to aid scientists in understanding their underlying principles. Yet, while the most complex models running on supercomputers may contain millions of lines of code and generate...

Supercomputing’s critical role in the fusion ignition breakthrough

Dec. 21, 2022 - 
On December 5th, the research team at LLNL's National Ignition Facility (NIF) achieved a historic win in energy science: for the first time ever, more energy was produced by an artificial fusion reaction than was consumed—3.15 megajoules produced versus 2.05 megajoules in laser energy to cause the reaction. High-performance computing was key to this breakthrough (called ignition), and HPCwire...

National Ignition Facility achieves fusion ignition

Dec. 13, 2022 - 
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and DOE’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today announced the achievement of fusion ignition at LLNL—a major scientific breakthrough decades in the making that will pave the way for advancements in national defense and the future of clean power. On Dec. 5, a team at LLNL’s National Ignition Facility (NIF) conducted the first controlled...

LLNL staff returns to Texas-sized Supercomputing Conference

Nov. 23, 2022 - 
The 2022 International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage, and Analysis (SC22) returned to Dallas as a large contingent of LLNL staff participated in sessions, panels, paper presentations, and workshops centered around HPC. The world’s largest conference of its kind celebrated its highest in-person attendance since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, with about 11...

LLNL researchers win HPCwire award for applying cognitive simulation to ICF

Nov. 17, 2022 - 
The high performance computing publication HPCwire announced LLNL as the winner of its Editor’s Choice award for Best Use of HPC in Energy for applying cognitive simulation (CogSim) methods to inertial confinement fusion (ICF) research. The award was presented at the largest supercomputing conference in the world: the 2022 International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking...

Scientific discovery for stockpile stewardship

Sept. 27, 2022 - 
Among the significant scientific discoveries that have helped ensure the reliability of the nation’s nuclear stockpile is the advancement of cognitive simulation. In cognitive simulation, researchers are developing AI/ML algorithms and software to retrain part of this model on the experimental data itself. The result is a model that “knows the best of both worlds,” says Brian Spears, a...

S&TR cover story: The ACES in our hand

Sept. 20, 2022 - 
Uranium enrichment is central to providing fuel to nuclear reactors, even those intended only for power generation. With minor modifications, however, this process can be altered to yield highly enriched uranium for use in nuclear weapons. The world’s need for nuclear fuel coexists with an ever-present danger—that a nonnuclear weapons nation-state possessing enrichment technology could...

Lab researchers win top award for machine learning-based approach to ICF experiments

Aug. 4, 2022 - 
The IEEE Nuclear and Plasma Sciences Society (NPSS) announced an LLNL team as the winner of its 2022 Transactions on Plasma Science Best Paper Award for their work applying machine learning to inertial confinement fusion (ICF) experiments. In the paper, lead author Kelli Humbird and co-authors propose a novel technique for calibrating ICF experiments by combining machine learning with...

An open-source, data-science toolkit for energy: GridDS

Aug. 2, 2022 - 
As the number of smart meters and the demand for energy is expected to increase by 50% by 2050, so will the amount of data those smart meters produce. While energy standards have enabled large-scale data collection and storage, maximizing this data to mitigate costs and consumer demand has been an ongoing focus of energy research. An LLNL team has developed GridDS—an open-source, data-science...

Defending U.S. critical infrastructure from nation-state cyberattacks

July 21, 2022 - 
For many years, LLNL has been conducting research on cybersecurity, as well as defending its systems and networks from cyberattacks. The Lab has developed an array of capabilities to detect and defend against cyberintruders targeting IT networks and worked with government agencies and private-sector partners to share its cybersecurity knowledge to the wider cyberdefense community. LLNL has...

Kevin McLoughlin applies computational biology to complex problems

May 17, 2022 - 
Kevin McLoughlin has always been fascinated by the intersection of computing and biology. His LLNL career encompasses award-winning microbial detection technology, a COVID-19 antiviral drug design pipeline, and work with the ATOM consortium. The appeal for him in these projects lies at the intersection of computing and biology. “I love finding ways to visualize data that reveal relationships...

Accelerating the path to precision medicine

March 22, 2022 - 
LLNL joined the Transforming Research and Clinical Knowledge in Traumatic Brain Injury (TRACK-TBI) consortium in 2018. The national, multiyear, multidisciplinary effort, led by the University of California at San Francisco in collaboration with Lawrence Berkeley and Argonne national laboratories and other leading research organizations and universities, combines neuroimaging, blood-based...