People - Written by on October 31, 2017

OLCF Staff Honored for Excellence in Science, Technology, and Support

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Suhas Somnath

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Contributions Recognized at ORNL’s annual Awards Night

Several Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF) staff members were recognized at the annual Awards Night of the US Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) on October 28 in Knoxville.

Personnel were honored for their contribution to the laboratory and excellence in science, technology, and mission support. The OLCF is a DOE Office of Science User Facility at ORNL.

A team led by Jim Rogers, director of computing and facilities for ORNL’s National Center for Computational Sciences, received an award for its efforts in identifying the source of hardware resiliency issues on the OLCF’s leadership-class supercomputer Titan. Additionally, the team employed a strategy that allowed the system to remain in operation. The work was essential to meeting the computational needs of the scientific computing community and aided in the design of Summit, the OLCF’s next leadership-class supercomputer.

Members of the team include OLCF operations manager Stephen McNally, OLCF system administrator Don Maxwell, Cray liaison Dave Londo, and Cray engineer Adam Sachitano.

OLCF project management assistant Lisa Rael was recognized for going above and beyond in her service to ORNL. In her 8-year tenure at the lab, Rael has handled 4,426 user requests for accounts and projects and has served as the first point of contact for new users. She has developed a deep understanding of complex policy and procedure and has demonstrated a welcoming spirit that enables scientific discovery.

Finally, Suhas Somnath, a recent addition to the OLCF’s Advanced Data and Workflow Group, was honored for work conducted as a postdoctoral researcher at ORNL’s Center for Nanophase Materials Science (CNMS).

Somnath played an instrumental role in incorporating advanced data-driven algorithms into materials analysis at CNMS. His efforts include the development of a community-driven software package called Pycroscopy that has dramatically reduced the time required to analyze materials and microscopy data. These contributions have improved the detection limits and capabilities of scanning probe microscopes.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science. The single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, the Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit