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SOFTWARE QUALITY ASSURANCE | CUSTOM APPLICATIONS

           Test selection                                Compute   Create test Help
           shortcuts                                     selected  reports

Test
selection
Model
selection

Test
status

           Inputs and status                             Output graphs, tables, and compute times

FIGURE 2. Model Tester app that will run a suite of models and compare results, such as temperature and electric potential, against the values
provided in the product documentation. The user receives an automated report once the test is complete.

SQA efforts into two categories: veri cation                       the results provided in the software documentation. The
and validation (V&V).                                              number of chosen applications can be large and every output
                                                                   variable reported in the results is required to be documented,
   Compliance with the validation requirements can be the          resulting in signi cant resources needed to complete the
most dif cult to meet since the ideal situation is to have         veri cation procedures.
experimental, test, or operational data to directly compare
and measure the code accuracy. For some codes, particularly           Jim says that “with the reporting requirements, qualifying
codes such as COMSOL Multiphysics that are new to the              a new version of COMSOL used to take around one to three
nuclear industry, the best approach, and the one that ORNL         months to complete, because we had to compare the results
intends to carry out for COMSOL Multiphysics, is to produce a      from several simulations by hand against the documentation
standalone validation report that demonstrates valid results       provided by COMSOL.”
for a number of simulations directly related to their research.
Alternatively, the validation task is included as part of the      ð STREAMLINING THE SQA PROCESS
formal nuclear-safety-related calculation process, as controlled
and governed by a separate procedure.                              This all changed when COMSOL introduced the Application
                                                                   Builder, and Michael W. Crowell (Mike) joined the ORNL
   While compliance with veri cation requirements is more          team as a nuclear safety and experiment analyst and saw
straightforward, it can be very time-consuming without the         the opportunity to automate part of the SQA process.
appropriate software tools. DOE requires the team to produce       The Application Builder allows simulation specialists using
a report that compares the results of a chosen set of COMSOL®      COMSOL Multiphysics for their physics-based analyses to build
software applications run by ORNL and included in the              a custom user interface for their models. This means that
Application Library shipped with COMSOL Multiphysics against       everyone on the team can access a COMSOL model and reap

MATLAB is a registered trademark of The MathWorks, Inc.                                            COMSOL.COM                                   27
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