Researcher models epidemics with inference technique

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Sandia researcher Jaideep Ray has developed a model that can determine in the first few days of an epidemic how fast the disease will spread and how many people may be infected.

In his third year of internal Laboratory Directed Research & Development (LDRD) funding, Ray has figured out a way to determine the number of people likely to be infected and die from noncommunicable illnesses like anthrax — ailments that could be caused by a potential bioterrorist attack — as well as communicable diseases like smallpox.

He came to this realisation in 2004 when he was working on a project for the Department of Defense where he developed a computer model that had decision makers responding to an epidemic at a naval base.