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Propagation of uncertainty through a hazard chain

Toxic substances released into the environment pose both an immediate and delayed risk to human health. When this release is in the form of a gas or vapour it is necessary to predict where the substance will disperse and deposit in the environment as this will allow a first responder to undertake appropriate mitigation strategies. To this end many organisations have worked to produce models which predict parts of this process. However, in order to produce an estimate of casualties that may result from exposure to the substance these disparate models must be tied together. Importantly, it is not only necessary to predict a casualty estimate but also to have an associated uncertainty with this value.

At a high level, the modelling chain includes a meteorological estimate, a second order closure dispersion model, and a casualty model. DSTL would like to challenge the Study Group to devise a methodology for estimating the uncertainty in the output of the chained models, given some knowledge of the uncertainty associated with each individual component.


Problem presented by:

Mike Redwood (DSTL)


Related resources:

Problem brief
Problem presentation (slides)
Problem presentation (video) *
Online discussion
Final presentation (slides)
Final presentation (video)


* Audio omitted at the request of DSTL.

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