Data Modeling & Analysis

What We Do

Around the world, stable and secure social, economic, and political systems are founded on a reliable supply of resources, including water, energy, and food. Yet natural events and human influences challenge the ability to ensure resources are available at local, regional, and global scales.

Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories develop and apply advanced data, modeling, and analysis technologies to improve the sustainability and resilience of interdependent water, energy, and food systems. Key to our approach is broad multi-sector, multi-disciplinary collaboration among experts and stakeholders to understand the interactions, interdependencies, feedbacks, and long-term consequences of future remediation and management approaches.


Data provide the foundation for any modeling or analysis project. Accordingly, we develop data sets that illustrate the dynamics between energy, water, and food production and supply. Specific examples include:

  • Working with state water managers, we have mapped the availability and cost of water at high spatial resolution throughout the United States.
    • Download the Water Availability and Cost papers here and here.
    • View the interactive Water Availability and Cost data (in process)
    • Download the Water Availability and Cost data (in process)
  • With the assistance of power plant operators, we have characterized plant-level details concerning water related threats (drought, flood, discharge) and remedial measures taken to mitigate impacts.
an image of water availability maps
With the help of water managers, water availability was mapped for over 3000 watersheds (HUC-8) throughout the United States.


We use a range of modeling tools to simulate coupled natural-human dynamics central to the function of energy-water-food systems. Our modeling experience transcends multiple sectors, multiple scales, and multiple modeling platforms. We have:

  • Developed an integrated assessment software tool (Water, Energy, and Carbon Sequestration Model [WECSsim]) to calculate the potential performance, location, and cost characteristics with a national CO2 storage program utilizing geologic saline formations.
an image of a system dynamics model
Using the Valdez acequia (a communally-managed irrigation system in northern New Mexico) as a simulation case study, we evaluate the impact of that community’s social structure in governing its responses to water availability stresses posed by climate change. A system dynamics model was developed.


We employ relational, geospatial and advanced data analytic methods to extract critical understanding and relationships from complex data sets. We have:

an illustration of a data analytic method
Using text analytics and machine learning, Sandia has evaluated relationships in water resource coverage in a million articles from local newspapers.

Stephanie Kuzio