The third is at the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, which could use the software for climate studies on Earth but also is interested in adapting it to study exoplanets. “The chemistry can be quite different from one planet to the next, so they want a tool that just makes it easy to say, here’s a different set of reactions, just plug that into the model,” Clune says.The Agency is exploring whether to license Kppa from ParaTools—and NASA isn’t the only entity interested.“The Swiss National Supercomputing Centre has used Kppa to run their national air quality reports,” Linford says. The government uses a large supercomputer to run its air quality studies, which, among other issues, runs up a hefty power bill. “So the sooner they can turn it off, the better, which means they’re very interested in a program that can reduce the run time.”With Kppa, “they can get answers in hours instead of days,” Linford says. That’s because Kppa takes advantage of the multi-core design of modern microprocessors, which allows many operations to be carried out in tandem. “The way it’s done traditionally, with the old tools, you have your atmosphere and you would chop it into little pieces, and each one would line up and go one at a time. And with Kppa, we can do many pieces at once.”What’s more, “if I can simulate in an hour what I used to simulate in a day, I can make the problem bigger, make it more descriptive or the grid resolution higher, get a much better scientific answer than I could before,” Linford says. Clune notes that NASA already had chemical kinetics software that allowed for parallel processing, but Kppa lets researchers take advantage of the most cutting-edge hardware as well as ensuring the software uses the latest mathematical solvers available.ParaTools’ clients for Kppa include universities as well as the air quality research division of Environment and Climate Change Canada, but, says Linford, “what we’re really interested in is developing relationships where we work together to build a better technology,” customized to their particular needs.“These systems and science become so complicated, it really takes a team to accomplish. We need chemists and engineers coupled with computer scientists to move forward.” vParatools Inc., which built the Kppa chemical modeling software, now sells it to clients around the world. Switzerland, where this picture was taken, is using it to run their national air quality reports.