LAMS’s Lillian Petersen Takes 3rd In 2016 Supercomputing Challenge

Lillian Petersen explains her Supercomputing Challenge project, ‘Detecting Climate Change Through Means and Extremes’ to Los Alamos National Laboratory Director Charlie McMillan. Courtesy/LAPS

LAPS News:

Los Alamos Middle School student Lillian Petersen won third place for her project, “Detecting Climate Change Through Means and Extremes.”

Petersen’s study aggregated data from thousands of weather stations around the world, which she processed and analyzed with a Python program she wrote to find overall changes and trends in climate around the world. She also won the Community Impact award for working with the Bradbury Science Museum to make a traveling exhibit that will be shown in museums across the country.

Petersen made a 5 minute video on her project that is very informative and entertaining:

  • low-res version (64 MB) for download:
  • high-res version (250MB) for download:
  • On YouTube:
  • Petersen’s web page:

About the Supercomputing Challenge

Founded in 1990, the New Mexico Supercomputing Challenge is a nonprofit educational organization that sponsors an annual computational science competition for middle- and high-school students in New Mexico.

The Supercomputing Challenge is sponsored by Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos National Security, LLC, the State of New Mexico, and generous industry partners across the country.

Scholarships worth more than $13,000 were awarded at the Supercomputing Challenge Expo. Many other awards were distributed ranging from random $100 gifts for finishing the academic marathon to team prizes for teamwork, programming prowess, and environmental impact.