Joint Meeting

Plenary Session Featuring The Fred Kavli Distinguished Lectureship in Materials Science

Thursday, December 3
10:15 am – 11:15 am

Dario GilDarío Gil, IBM T. J. Watson Research Center
Scaling the Scientific Method to Enter the Era of Accelerated Materials Discovery

As our quest to accelerate the discovery of new materials becomes ever more important, a revolution in computing promises to create unseen compute power in terms of performance but more importantly, for solving problems so far deemed unsolvable.

The classical digital systems of today will be augmented by AI and quantum computers to enable workloads and applications that are impossible today. Materials discovery is one of the workloads we see as ripe for this transformation.

This presentation will detail our vision for a 10x acceleration in the pace of materials discovery. It highlights the computational tools we've developed at IBM Research to deliver that acceleration and illustrates their use in the discovery of novel extreme ultraviolet (EUV) photoresist materials.

Meanwhile, quantum computing has emerged as a computing paradigm with the potential to address problems out of reach for even the most powerful supercomputers. Particularly well suited for the simulation of the quantum mechanical aspects of nature, it is expected to profoundly change the way to study and develop new materials. Since existing devices are limited by noise, developing methods to solve larger problems with smaller devices is paramount. We will present a new approach to double the computational reach of existing quantum computing hardware to enable scaling to larger material systems.

We conclude with reflections on how AI and quantum computing would complement each other to massively accelerate R&D, what the decade holds for their convergence, and the implications for accelerated discovery.

About Darío Gil

Darío Gil is the Director of IBM Research, one of the world’s largest and most influential corporate research labs. He is the 12th director in its 75-year history. IBM Research is composed of over 3,000 researchers at 19 locations on six continents
advancing the future of computing. Gil leads innovation efforts at IBM, directing research strategies in areas including AI, cloud, quantum computing and exploratory science. Under his leadership, IBM was the first company in the world to build programmable quantum computers and make them universally-available through the cloud.

An advocate of collaborative research models, Gil co-chairs the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab, which advances fundamental AI research to the broad benefit of industry and society. He also co-chairs the COVID-19 High-Performance Computing Consortium, which provides access to the world’s most powerful high-performance computing resources in support of COVID-19 research.

Gil is a trustee of the New York Hall of Science, and is a member of the National Science Board (NSB), the governing body of the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Gil received his PhD degree in electrical engineering and computer science from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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