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Materials Genome Initiative Steps Forward with Shared Data Facility

mgi_hero_photoThe National Data Service Consortium is launching a materials data facility for the advancement of materials science research through open data access and sharing.

The news comes on the third anniversary of President Barack Obama establishing the Materials Genome Initiative (MGI)—a multi-agency effort to transform materials science research in the United States through a national infrastructure.

The effort includes NCSA and University of Illinois, along with others at University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory, as well as Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute. Along these lines, NCSA has organized a NDS Consortium of major national research organizations, publishers, Internet2, and more. The goal is to create national services for creating data collections, for publishing, identifying, and discovering them, and linking them to scientific literature. The Materials Data Facility will serve as a pilot program for NDS and will create the first open materials data facility in support of the President’s materials genome and manufacturing initiatives.

NDS is a new emerging vision for a national data infrastructure that enables the discovery, reuse, and publication of data for scientists and researchers across all disciplines. Sharing in this vision, the Materials Data Facility will push the MGI’s goals of doubling the pace of development of advanced materials research.

This will be the first on-line facility to build on the objectives of the National Data Service by providing open access to a broad a range of materials science data. This is a terrific opportunity to accelerate materials discovery and advance manufacturing, by deeply connecting research, data and publication activities,” says Ed Seidel, director of the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a founding institution of the NDS Consortium.

Through the facility’s cloud-hosted data publication and discovery services, materials research projects will have an essential platform for rapid data sharing, discovery, and analysis that will accelerate the process for bringing new materials into industrial use. Key components of the facility will include multi-petabyte storage environments at NCSA and at Argonne National Laboratory, as well as the Globus research data management service operated by the University of Chicago.

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