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Hubert Ley

Manager, Engineering Assessments & Plant Controls

Hubert Ley is the Director of Argonne’s Transportation Research and Analysis Computing Center (TRACC). He also manages the Engineering Assessments group within Argonne’s Nuclear Science and Engineering Division.


Dr. Hubert Ley is the Director of the Transportation Research and Analysis Computing Center at Argonne National Laboratory. He also manages the Engineering Assessments group within Argonne’s Nuclear Science and Engineering Division. He received his doctorate in Mechanical Engineering (specializing in Nuclear Engineering) in 1994 from the Rheinisch-Westfaelische Technische Hochschule (RWTH) in Aachen, Germany. He has worked at Argonne since 1991, primarily as a nuclear engineer, focusing on the modeling and simulation of reactor fuels and reactor accident scenarios, advanced scientific visualization, international nuclear safety cooperation, and the development of advanced computing tools to support a wide variety of domestic and international scientific projects. Starting in 2006, Dr. Ley became involved with a new inititiave of the U.S. Department of Transportation to establish TRACC, the Transportation Research and Analysis Computing Center at Argonne. He became the director of TRACC in 2010 and reshaped TRACC’s mission to more directly support specific USDOT programmatic programs, broaden scientific capabilities at TRACC, and work closely with various computing-intensive projects around the lab.

As USDOT’s premier scientific computing center, TRACC operates the two largest high performance computing clusters owned by and operated for the US Department of Transportation. At TRACC, Dr. Ley established an extensive support program for USDOT’s efforts to improve dynamic transportation simulation capabilities, in particular for large metropolitan areas such as Chicago. Dr. Ley was primarily responsible for the development of user interfaces and visualization tools for TRANSIMS, and for the parallelization of this software and adaptation to high performance computing platforms. After becoming TRACC’s director, new work in the areas of hydrodynamics, wind engineering, computational fluid dynamics, crash analysis, and computational structural mechanics was started based on directly supporting USDOT research efforts in these areas. Under Dr. Ley’s leadership, extensive work was performed for the City of Chicago and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to develop a transportation simulation tool (RTSTEP) that allows emergency responders to build evacuation scenarios and analyze the resulting effects on the transportation system. Under his joint appointment with the University of Chicago, Dr. Ley is leading a team of research universities and regional transit operators in the development of methodologies to improve the resilience of transit operations, with a special focus on Chicago’s extensive and complex transit system..

Dr. Ley’s background is in the development of scientific research tools and applications, such as advanced user interfaces, visualization technologies, and web-based communication technology. He worked for 15 years as a nuclear engineer at Argonne National Laboratory, mostly on modeling and simulation of nuclear fuels, simulations of severe reactor accidents, and sensor analysis algorithms. He was also responsible for building the computing and networking infrastructure supporting the International Nuclear Safety Centers across the former Soviet Union, and for establishing the Asian Nuclear Safety Network communication infrastructure in many countries across Asia, a project where Dr. Ley served as a technical consultant to the International Atomic Energy Agency and the US Department of Energy.

Dr. Ley shifted his work towards high performance cluster operations based on his experience in scientific computing, and is currently directing the research efforts and the user facility operations at TRACC.