Materials Informatics is a Disruptive Technology for Chemicals and Materials R&D, Says Lux Research
Startups including Citrine Informatics, Lumiant, and Nutonian are re-shaping this growing landscape
BOSTON, MA – August 8, 2017 – Advanced materials can improve products from cars to medical devices, but bringing a new material to market to date has been slow, costly, and prone to false starts. With the burgeoning field of materials informatics use of artificial intelligence (AI), the pace of innovation will accelerate, affecting all industries that use materials, according to Lux Research, a leading provider of intelligence services, helping clients drive growth through technology innovation.
“Materials technology is critical to our daily lives, from the planes that fly us around the world to the electronics that connect and entertain us – but cost, time, and property translation challenges mean that it can take decades after its initial discovery to make it into products at scale,” said Dayton Horvath, Research Associate at Lux Research and lead author of the report, Materials Informatics: The Next Research Revolution? “Now, new software tools can save both time and R&D costs, while also improving the performance of the final product.”
Lux analysts examined a variety of case studies, and assessed key players on the Lux Innovation Grid, finding that:
- AI makes materials informatics widely applicable. The flexibility of AI allows materials informatics to be applied to all areas of chemistry and materials science including: semiconductors, formulations, metal alloys, polymers, catalysts, battery materials, and even 3D printing.
- Early-stage materials informatics startups show promise. Recent advances in cloud computing, government support, and the proliferation of big data have boosted a rash of new entrants that have the potential to transform materials innovation. On the Lux Innovation Grid, Nutonian rates as a “Dominant" player, while Citrine Informatics, Lumiant, Uncountable, and IBM’s Accelerated Materials Discovery rate as “High-potential.”
- Data presents the greatest challenge and the greatest opportunity. With the lack of data standards, central repositories, and publicly available published materials data, the greatest challenge is the quality, quantity, and accessibility of the data itself. Materials informatics is only as good as the data used to inform AI algorithms, which gives an edge to chemical companies that have strong R&D and the wealth of experimental and computational data that comes with it.
The report titled, Materials Informatics: The Next Research Revolution? is part of the Lux Research Materials Design and Manufacturing intelligence service.
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