Artist’s rendering of Combustion Research Facility (CRF) complex (right) with proposed Combustion Research Computation and Visualization (CRCV) building (left). The new $5 million building, funded by the Department of Energy's Office of Science (SC) and Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EE), will enhance the computational and modeling efforts that are central to the CRF's work portfolio.
Drawing by Daniel Strong

A few mounds of dirt in Livermore, Calif., were moved at a ground-breaking ceremony for the start of a combustion research facility, which had been a nothing more than a vision for two decades.

The 8,400-ft2Combustion Research Computational and Visualization building will be dedicated to predictive modeling and simulation as well as contain experimental laboratories. The facility had been a dream 20 years ago of the director of the CRC at the time. The CRC is part of Sandia National Laboratories, Livermore.

The site will support simulations that will allow examination of fine-scale coupling between turbulence and chemistry interactions. Large-eddy simulations will enable the modeling of an entire engine intake and combustion chamber as well as the smaller-scale transport and chemistry issues.

According to Rick Stulen, Sandia's vice president, the CRF's capabilities are essential to help meet the challenges laid down by President Barak Obama: an 80 percent reduction in CO2emissions by 2050 and a 25 percent drop in liquid-petroleum consumption.