Computer Science Professors Carla Gomes and Bart Selman are part of a Cornell research group that has recently been awarded a $7.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Defense. The group will focus on a project titled "Scientific Autonomous Reasoning Agent (SARA): Integrating Materials Theory, Experiment and Computation." Their goal is to develop a multi-agent system that accelerates the science of materials discovery and development by integrating quantum physics principles, experimental materials synthesis, processing, characterization and AI-based algorithms.
The system will be augmented by human insights so that artificial intelligence leverages that of expert scientists. This, the group said in its summary, will create an unprecedented platform for human-machine collaboration. The group claims that SARA will realize the vision of the Materials Genome Initiative, a multi-agency initiative launched in 2011 to create a new era of policy, resources and infrastructure by discovering, manufacturing and deploying advanced materials.
Researchers from Colorado University, Northwestern University and the California Institute of Technology are also on the team.