Research at the SDS Lab

Sustainability and Data Sciences Laboratory (SDS Lab)

PI: Auroop R. Ganguly

Website: External (always under construction), Internal (not regularly updated)

Overview: Research at the SDS Lab strives to develop novel insights in the interdisciplinary sciences of climate extremes and the engineering principles of networked lifelines to inform adaptation and policy. Physics-integrated spatiotemporal machine learning and nonlinear dynamics enable the discovery of new insights in climate extremes and uncertainty, while network sciences and optimization along with engineering or ecological principles aid in understanding infrastructural or ecosystem vulnerability. Decision sciences and policy imperatives need to be deeply integrated in the scientific discovery and technological invention processes.

Climate Science: Novel predictive understanding of weather extremes, regional hydrometeorology, and ecological drivers in a changing climate, specifically, temperature and precipitation extremes, model evaluation, variability and uncertainty, and implications for water, energy, agriculture and ecology.

Lifeline Engineering: Fundamental principles of climate adaptation and resilience engineering for lifeline infrastructure networks, specifically, the sustainability and security of power and energy, communication and sensors, multimodal transportation, and water or wasterwater systems.

Data Science: New methods and technologies in machine learning and nonlinear physics, including physics-informed data mining and uncertainty quantification, spatiotemporal machine learning and extreme value analysis, as well as network science and information theory, for risk and resilience modeling.

Products: The SDS Lab PI (Auroop Ganguly), with his students, postdocs and visiting professors, have published in top disciplinary and interdisciplinary venues in climate science (Nature, PNAS, Nature Climate Change), lifeline engineering (IEEE Transactions, ASCE) and data science (KDD, IJCAI), leading to citations in the United Nations intergovernmental and United States national reports, highlights in scientific venues such as the journal Nature and in the National Science Foundation media, quotes and citations in the global media, as well as best paper and presentation awards. The SDS Lab has developed two US patents, one in climate risk and one in infrastructure resilience, and spawned a startup called risQ.

Funding: The SDS Lab has been and continues to be generously funded by US federal agencies such as NSF, DOD, NASA, DHS, DOE and DOE Labs. Occasional funding and in-kind support have been received from the private and public sectors. The students and postdocs benefit from our strong experiential relationships with federal agencies such as NASA and DOE Labs such as PNNL and ORNL, as well as the private and public sectors including the Lab spinout startup risQ.

Workforce: SDS Lab alums and research mentees of the SDS Lab PI have assumed key research and leadership roles in the private sector, government research institutes, and in academia. Our alums are in US federal agencies such as NASA and in US national laboratories such as DOE’s ORNL and DOT’s VOLPE. Our alums are in niche and leadership roles in the US private sector in areas such as machine learning, risk modeling and engineering. One alum is the co-founder and CEO of a climate analytics startup. Alums in the US and Indian academia include award-winning professors at multiple campuses of the Indian Institute of Technology.

Last Updated: Sep 2022