Welcome to the Summer 2022 edition of AMBER Update, the electronic newsletter for the AMBER software tool that allows users to build their own 3D deterministic and probabilistic dynamic compartment models to represent the migration, degradation and fate of contaminants in environmental and engineered systems.

AMBER 6.6 Released

Quintessa is pleased to announce that the latest version of AMBER has been released. AMBER 6.6 offers an improved user experience on small screens, as well as a number of calculation and usability improvements and bug fixes. In particular, AMBER 6.6:

  • introduces vertical scroll bars on a number of model tabs;
  • warns the user if changes have been made within parameter editor tabs but not yet applied;
  • ensures case files with a spatial model have a similar run time to those case files without a spatial model; and
  • propagates missing values through parameter expressions and allows evaluation where possible.

In addition, the issue regarding availability schemes, identified in the AMBER 6.5 release, has now been resolved. The release also includes various other minor feature updates and bug fixes.

Following user requests, we have completed production of a suite of videos of the AMBER User Guide tutorials. These can be found on Quintessa Limited's YouTube page. Please subscribe so that you can be notified as new videos are uploaded.

If you have a valid software maintenance agreement, please download AMBER 6.6. If not, you can download the AMBER 6.6 Demo.

 AMBER 6.6   AMBER 6.6 Demo 

If you would like to renew your maintenance agreement or purchase AMBER, please contact us.

Modelling of dietary iodine intake and excretion

AMBER has recently been used in a Canadian PhD study at the University of Ottawa, entitled "An Assessment of Iodine-129 and Iodine 127 in Human Biological Materials with Modelling of Dietary Iodine Intake and Excretion".

The thesis was concerned with iodine status and sources in the human body, and measurements in human materials in the Canadian population. In particular, a biokinetic model of iodine, developed by Leggett (2017), was implemented in AMBER, and used to investigate the main sources of I-127 and I-129 in the Canadian diet based on daily food consumption survey data, and modelling of the urinary iodine concentration for adults and infants.

For further details, read the full news story.

A screenshot from the AMBER software. This shows a colour-coded network of compartments, represented as labelled boxes, neatly organised. Each compartment represents a different place where iodine may reside, such as liver, blood, thyroid, kidney, urine. Transfers between compartments are represented by arrows. Each transfer between compartments represents a possible pathway for iodine.
The Leggett (2017) biokinetic model of iodine implemented in AMBER. A new compartment (Urine_Sink) and a new transfer (Urine_TO_Urine_Sink) were added to the model as part of the PhD research; these are shown in white.

Recent Publications using AMBER

The following publications from 2021 and 2022 cite the use of AMBER.

Future Enhancements

Quintessa is fully committed to the long-term development and support of AMBER, with on-going development and annual software updates. Developments planned for the future include improvements to the user interface and the ability to add quality assurance checks and comments to case files.

We very much welcome feedback about AMBER, including ideas and suggestions for further developments that would help maintain its utility and applicability to a wide range of contaminant transport and risk assessment situations.

We are especially seeking feedback on any enhancements that could be made to the user interface to improve the usability of the software. Please contact the AMBER team with any suggestions or requests. Similarly, to report a bug in AMBER, please email details to the AMBER team.

AMBER Support

Quintessa continues to support AMBER, both through directed support to licence holders and by applying the software to safety and performance assessment studies of contaminants in the environment. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions about AMBER, its application and/or about our associated support and training programme.