Data tools

Drexel Joins New NSF Institute Using Data Tools to Support Materials Science Research







Drexel’s Metadata Research Center will join 10 partner institutions in a new National Science Foundation effort to provide data tools that support materials science research and development.


Drexel University’s Metadata Research Center within the College of Computing & Informatics is one of 10 research partners to be part of new $15 million funding National Science Foundation Effort harness the power of data science and artificial intelligence to guide materials science research.

The last two decades have seen an acceleration in the search for new materials with exceptional capabilities. From graphene to carbon nanotubes, to Drexel’s own contribution MXenes, scientists are discovering new ways to create chemically stable materials that perform exceptionally well in functions such as energy storage, air filtration, and more. water and air and the transmission of radio waves. But with seemingly endless promise, comes the challenge of narrowing the true pathways to progress.

The goal of the NSF Institute for Data-Driven Dynamical Research is to bring together the best experimentally validated approaches and tools to design and study these materials and structures.

“The volume of data generated by materials science researchers every day offers an unprecedented opportunity for new discoveries and shared approaches, but the data is too massive to process on its own,” said Jane Greenberg, Ph.D., Alice B. Kroeger Professor at the College of Computing & Informatics and Director of Drexel’s Metadata Research Center (MRC). “The collaborative and multidisciplinary approach that this institute takes represents a paradigm shift from traditional materials research efforts.”

Led by the Colorado School of Mines, the Institute will focus on new learning representations and architectures that capture the time evolution of complex materials, efficient exploration of time-dependent design spaces, and new tools for visual analysis to incorporate human feedback into the design process.

“Drexel University’s Metadata Research Center will be at the forefront of advancing the functionality of ontological systems in materials science. Ontologies, as structured knowledge systems, support automatic reasoning and can enhance AI applications. Drexel researchers will advance the HIVE-4-MAT ontology integration application by applying information extraction methods to create richer knowledge structures to support predictive analytics. said Greenberg.

In addition to the Colorado School of Mines and Drexel’s Metadata Research Center, research groups from Harvard University, Northeastern University, Northwestern University, Tufts University, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, University of Central Florida, University of Washington-St. Louis and his industrial partner Kebotix, Inc. will work together to develop algorithms and mechanisms that will give researchers better tools to predict and understand the behavior of new materials.

“We are extremely proud of the Metadata Research Center’s participation in this groundbreaking NSF institute, and through the exceptional leadership of Dr. Jane Greenberg, their involvement reflects their ongoing and invaluable contributions to innovations in data science,” said Yi Deng, PhD, Isaac L. Auerbach Professor and Dean of the College of Computing & Informatics.

Since its founding in 2004, the MRC has been a leader in the field of innovative solutions for urgent information and data-driven challenges in scientific, social and humanistic fields. In addition to leading the MRC, Greenberg is the Project Manager for NSF Harnessing the Data Revolution. project “Accelerating electronic materials discovery through human-computer active research,which is the base grant for the new Institute.

Greenberg’s group will also support the Data-Driven Dynamical Design Institute’s goal of helping researchers accurately and effectively share knowledge and new discoveries across disciplines. As an active national and global participant Research Data Alliance and a member of the NSF Northeast Big Data Innovation Centerthe MRC will work with these organizations to put in place FAIR Data Principles across the Institute and share these data sharing approaches more widely with the research data community.

The Data-Driven Dynamical Design Institute is one of five new Harnessing Data Revolution Institutesfunded by a $75 million NSF program to enable new modes of data-driven discovery that will explore fundamental questions at the frontiers of science and engineering.

In addition to Greenberg, a professor at the College of Computing & Informatics Xiaohua Hu, PhDAssociate Professor Yuan An, PhD and doctoral student Xintong Zhao will participate in the collaboration.