Data Science in the News

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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...

Understanding the universe with applied statistics (VIDEO)

Nov. 17, 2022 - 
In a new video posted to the Lab’s YouTube channel, statistician Amanda Muyskens describes MuyGPs, her team’s innovative and computationally efficient Gaussian Process hyperparameter estimation method for large data. The method has been applied to space-based image classification and released for open-source use in the Python package MuyGPyS. MuyGPs will help astronomers and astrophysicists...

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...

Building confidence in materials modeling using statistics

Oct. 31, 2021 - 
LLNL statisticians, computational modelers, and materials scientists have been developing a statistical framework for researchers to better assess the relationship between model uncertainties and experimental data. The Livermore-developed statistical framework is intended to assess sources of uncertainty in strength model input, recommend new experiments to reduce those sources of uncertainty...

Summer scholar develops data-driven approaches to key NIF diagnostics

Oct. 20, 2021 - 
Su-Ann Chong's summer project, “A Data-Driven Approach Towards NIF Neutron Time-of-Flight Diagnostics Using Machine Learning and Bayesian Inference,” is aimed at presenting a different take on nToF diagnostics. Neutron time-of-flight diagnostics are an essential tool to diagnose the implosion dynamics of inertial confinement fusion experiments at NIF, the world’s largest and most energetic...

Brian Gallagher combines science with service

June 20, 2021 - 
Brian Gallagher works on applications of machine learning for a variety of science and national security questions. He’s also a group leader, student mentor, and the new director of LLNL’s Data Science Challenge. The Lab has enabled Gallagher to combine scientific pursuits with leadership positions and people-focused responsibilities. “For a long time, my primary motivation was learning new...

Advanced Data Analytics for Proliferation Detection shares technical advances during two-day meeting

May 7, 2021 - 
The Advanced Data Analytics for Proliferation Detection (ADAPD) program held a two-day virtual technical exchange meeting recently. The goal of the meeting was to highlight the science-based and data-driven analysis work conducted by ADAPD to advance the state-of-the-art to accelerate artificial intelligence (AI) innovation and develop AI-enabled systems to enhance the United States’...

Ana Kupresanin featured in FOE alumni spotlight

March 10, 2021 - 
LLNL's Ana Kupresanin, deputy director of the Center for Applied Scientific Computing and member of the Data Science Institute council, was recently featured in a Frontiers of Engineering (FOE) alumni spotlight. Kupresanin develops statistical and machine learning models that incorporate real-world variability and probabilistic behavior to quantify uncertainties in engineering and physics...

LLNL physicist wins Young Former Student award

Dec. 16, 2020 - 
Texas A&M University’s Department of Nuclear Engineering on December 10 announced it has honored LLNL physicist Kelli Humbird with its 2020-21 Young Former Student award for her work at LLNL in combining machine learning with inertial confinement fusion (ICF) research. Humbird graduated from Texas A&M with a PhD in nuclear engineering in 2019. Since joining the Laboratory as an intern in 2016...

From intern to mentor, Nisha Mulakken builds a career in bioinformatics

Nov. 3, 2020 - 
The COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a wave of new research and development at the Lab, and Nisha Mulakken is very busy. The biostatistician has enhanced the Lawrence Livermore Microbial Detection Array (LLMDA) system with detection capability for all variants of SARS-CoV-2. The technology detects a broad range of organisms—viruses, bacteria, archaea, protozoa, and fungi—and has demonstrated...

The internship that launched a machine-learning target revolution

Oct. 1, 2020 - 
Kelli Humbird came to LLNL as a student intern and became a teacher of new data science techniques. In this profile, she describes her experiences and the path that led to her research inertial confinement fusion. Read more at the National Ignition Facility.

Modeling neuronal cultures on 'brain-on-a-chip' devices

June 12, 2020 - 
For the past several years, LLNL scientists and engineers have made significant progress in development of a three-dimensional “brain-on-a-chip” device capable of recording neural activity of human brain cell cultures grown outside the body. The team has developed a statistical model for analyzing the structures of neuronal networks that form among brain cells seeded on in vitro brain-on-a...

Local Women in Data Science conference showcases Lab research

April 3, 2020 - 
For the third consecutive year, LLNL hosted a Women in Data Science (WiDS) regional event on March 2. The event drew dozens of attendees from LLNL, Sandia National Laboratories, local universities, and Bay Area commercial companies. Livermore was one of over 200 regional events in 60 countries coordinated with the main WiDS conference at Stanford University. According to the WiDS website...

Cindy Gonzales forges a new career in data science

Sept. 25, 2019 - 
Through LLNL’s Data Science Immersion Program, Gonzales is now among the Lab’s newest data scientists. For two and a half years, she juggled a demanding workload—coordinating Computing’s Scholar Program, interning with data scientists, learning from mentors, supporting LLNL’s Data Science Institute, and attending college part time—while also having her first child. Read more at LLNL Computing...

Collaboration drives data science workshop

Sept. 12, 2019 - 
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s (LLNL’s) Data Science Institute (DSI) hosted its second annual workshop on July 23–24, 2019. Co-sponsored by the University of California (UC) system, the event drew more than 200 participants to Garré Winery in Livermore. A common theme ran throughout both days: Collaboration is always welcome. Indeed, feedback from last year’s workshop inspired a...

New open-air facility will be testing ground for autonomous drones, vehicles and robots

July 25, 2019 - 
LLNL’s new OS-150 Robotics Laboratory is an outdoor, 8,000 square-foot enclosure that will serve as a proving ground for the autonomous drones, vehicles and robots of the future. Informally known as the "drone pen," the 50-foot-tall rectangular enclosure, located directly across from one of the Lab’s main engineering buildings, is allowing operators to pilot their drones safely and...

Protecting image classification in artificial intelligence

July 8, 2019 - 
To address vulnerability concerns in image classification, a new subfield of machine learning has emerged called adversarial machine learning, which focuses on the security of machine learning algorithms. Thomas Hogan, a doctoral student of mathematics at UC Davis, spent his summer investigating this new area of research during the National Science Foundation’s Mathematical Sciences Graduate...