The Journey from Atoms to Assessed Engineering with Quantitative Confidence: Purpose, Principles, and Some Practice

Monday, December 16, 2013 - 8:45am - 9:15am
Lind 305
Peter Schultz (Sandia National Laboratories)
How does one go from good science to good engineering, and conversely, how does one reach into sub-continuum scale physics to add greater fidelity to an engineering scale analysis meant to inform high-consequence decisions? For scientific investigations at the atomistic scale, the numerical analyses that feed into quantitative assessments of uncertainties at the engineering scale can seem inaccessibly remote. A seemingly numerically impenetrable series of upscalings in an multiscale sequence intervenes, usually without a predetermined, well-defined roadmap of causal relationships. What's the point of sub-continuum uncertainties? For every aspect contributing to an engineering assessment, a measure of quantitative confidence is required and valuable. This talk discusses verification and validation, and uncertainty quantification, in the context of physical simulations at lower length and time scales that are the foundation of a nascent multiscale sequence in an uncharted landscape. I will illustrate strategies that focus on the central principle of obtaining and assessing quantitative confidence in results, identifying meaningful sources of uncertainties. --- Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-program laboratory managed and operated by Sandia Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Company, for the U.S. Department of Energy’s NNSA under contract DE-AC04-94AL85000.