Pryor, a native of Pittsburgh (Hazelwood and Greenfield
neighborhoods), graduated from Penn State University
in 1965 with a degree in Physics and received a Ph.D. in
Nuclear Physics from the University of Pittsburgh in 1970.
He began his career at the Savannah River Laboratory in
Aiken, SC, where he was assigned to the reactor physics
group. His first task was to investigate the potential
of Response Matrix Theory for reactor charge design. He
successfully used this theory to compute the criticality
of complex reactor lattices. He later applied this theory
to the criticality of the entire reactor core. He was quickly
promoted to a Research Supervisor, but left there in 1976
to work at Los Alamos National Laboratory on a new project
called TRAC. TRAC was a state-of-the-art computer code
to model loss-of-coolant accidents in nuclear power plants.
The project was funded by the NRC and consisted of a team
of about twenty-five staff members. After two years, he
became the manager of the group and two years later was
promoted to a Program Manager at the Laboratory where he
managed many non-weapon nuclear programs.
Rich was assigned to the Office of Science and Technology
Policy in The White House where he served as a senior policy
analysis for nuclear issues. He returned to Savannah River
in 1984 as a Research Manager to start a new organization
called Scientific Computing. While there, he was responsible
for the purchase of the site's first CRAY supercomputer and
he started many new programs in reactor safety and design,
process modeling, computer graphics, and artificial intelligence.
Rich went to Sandia National Laboratories in April 1989.
He was promoted to a department manager and later to a senior
scientist. His work at Sandia focused mainly on agent-based
modeling and machine learning. This led to a patent on
the use of software agents to model an economy. He retired
from Sandia in December of 2004 to open an office in Albuquerque
to do research on forecasting
markets using evolutionary learning algorithms. He also
serves as a consultant to Sandia.
computing experience in the areas of nuclear physics, neutron
transport, two-phase fluid flow, neural networks, genetic
algorithms, agent-based modeling, machine learning, and high
performance parallel processing. He loves to write software
and to develop new technologies. He has written many papers
and has an article about some of his work in
Week. As a member of the American Nuclear Society, he
served as the Chairman of the Mathematics and Computation
Division. He is also a member of the American Physical Society
and the Civil Air Patrol where he is a mission pilot.
updated: December 10, 2008