Office of Environmental Management

Upgraded Modeling System Supports Long-Term Hanford Cleanup Decisions

May 14, 2019

You are here

Mike Cline, second from left, project director for soil and groundwater cleanup with EM's Richland Operations Office (RL), points out the new modeling system during a tour with RL and contractor managers.
Mike Cline, second from left, project director for soil and groundwater cleanup with EM's Richland Operations Office (RL), points out the new modeling system during a tour with RL and contractor managers.

RICHLAND, Wash. – A recently upgraded computer modeling system with the combined power of more than 1,100 desktop computers significantly improves the analysis of environmental data, allowing EM's Richland Operations Office (RL) and contractor CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company (CHPRC) to better evaluate the cumulative effect of cleanup decisions at the Hanford Site.

The advanced system, called Gaia, provides a more comprehensive look at how potential cleanup actions affect one another and evaluates the long-term effect of cleanup progress.

Modeling data input in the system produces lightning-fast calculations, with results coming in days compared with months for the previous system. Data from the enhanced system will enable a technical approach to evaluating environmental cleanup actions.

“The ability to quickly review and evaluate the predicted outcomes of integrated cleanup scenarios is groundbreaking,” said Bill Hamel, RL assistant manager for river and plateau. “Hanford cleanup is incredibly complex, and the enhanced data will improve confidence in our decision-making process.”

William Nichols with EM Richland Operations Office subcontractor INTERA briefs the Richland Operations Office on an upgraded modeling system.
William Nichols with EM Richland Operations Office subcontractor INTERA briefs the Richland Operations Office on an upgraded modeling system.

CHPRC and subcontractor INTERA successfully launched the Gaia system in April. The new system is able to run multiple models simultaneously, generating results by as much as 94 percent faster than the previous system.

“I am proud of our team for completing this much-needed upgrade,” said Moses Jaraysi, CHPRC vice president for environmental programs and strategic planning. “The improved tool will provide a better understanding of the impacts of environmental cleanup decisions for years to come and support risk-based decision-making.”

Email Updates
To receive the latest news and updates about the office of Environmental Management, submit your e-mail address.