Riley M Cumberland

Research and Development Staff Member

The opportunity to solve meaningful problems drew Riley to work for the Used Fuel Systems group. Here Riley addresses complex problems related to spent nuclear fuel, using high-power tools such as python, SCALE and UNF-ST&DARDS, an in-house tool to automate spent nuclear fuel physics calculations.

Over the past several years, Riley and his colleagues have evaluated potential strategies for storage and transportation of spent nuclear fuel in an Integrated Waste Management system using detailed, agent-based simulation models. The Used Fuel and Nuclear Material Disposition Group, together with other DOE labs, identifies key system parameters, logistical challenges, and opportunities to improve safe system performance. Riley is instrumental to this work, developing cost estimates, managing system model database tables, and automating analysis.

Prediction of radiation doses outside spent nuclear fuel casks is a deceptively challenging problem to solve, often requiring substantial computational power. Riley has been consulted in this area to develop lighter weight cask options, organize tests and measurements to validate computer codes, and simply predict does rates. Recently, Riley led a team to design a shielding benchmark experiment to better validate computer models.

Riley enjoys finding new perspectives that have the potential to change outcomes, and adventure is how he develops that ability.  In keeping with this, Riley earned his masters at KAIST, an engineering school in South Korea studying molten salt electrochemical systems.  To keep his mind fresh, Riley enjoys hiking, biking, travel, and camping.  He also enjoys DIY endeavors such as auto maintenance, gardening and baking.