2020 MRS Spring Meeting

Symposium X—Frontiers of Materials Research

Symposium X—Frontiers of Materials Research features lunchtime lectures aimed at a broad audience to provide meeting attendees with an overview of leading-edge topics.

Reshma Shetty, Ginkgo Bioworks, Inc.
Designing Biology

Reshma ShettyTuesday, April 14
12:15 pm – 1:15 pm
PCC North, 100 Level, Ballroom 120 D

Biology is the most powerful technology on the planet. It’s ability to self-repair, self-replicate and make atomically precise structures is unparalleled among manufacturing technologies. At Ginkgo, we are passionate about harnessing the power of biology by designing it. Unfortunately, despite significant advancements in recent years, the tools and technology for biological design remain woefully inadequate relative to the potential of biological technology. Our limited understanding of how biology works means that, for now, biological design is essentially a search problem. At Ginkgo, we are leveraging automation and software to build a genetic engineering foundry that allows us to more cheaply and scalably search potential biological design space for functional organism designs. In particular, I will highlight the value of combining computer-aided engineering software tools, cheap gene synthesis and high resolution-accurate mass LCMS to develop engineered microbes. Then, I'll discuss how we applied these technologies for improving a "living medicine" for the treatment of a metabolic disorder.

Christine Ortiz, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Socially-Directed Science and Technology Education, Research and Innovation—Opportunities and Challenges for the Field of Materials Science and Engineering

Christine OrtizWednesday, April 15
12:15 pm – 1:15 pm
PCC North, 100 Level, Ballroom 120 D

We live in an exciting era of transformation in science and technology with ever-increasing global connectedness, which has both the potential for tackling the enduring problems of humanity, but also is rife with ethical and social perils. Education in science and technology, rooted in equity, inclusion, sustainability and social inquiry is more important than ever to our societal, economic and cultural survival, let alone progress. Simultaneously, university systems across the globe face both challenges and opportunities as we aim to engage a more diverse community of learners, leverage new pedagogies and technologies and cultivate a productive relationship between academic and industrial spheres. This presentation will discuss trends, opportunities and challenges to bridge disciplinary boundaries and professional practices, and to foster deep learning, personal transformation and civic responsibility through socially directed scientific and technological inquiry, with a particular focus on the field of Materials Science and Engineering.

Vijay Narayanan, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
The Golden Age of Materials Innovations—From High-κ/Metal Gate to AI Hardware

Vijay NarayananThursday, April 16
12:15 pm – 1:15 pm
PCC North, 100 Level, Ballroom 120 D

High-κ/Metal Gates are ubiquitous in CMOS chips and are a product of intense collaborative research across academia and corporate laboratories. These new materials re-enabled a roadmap for CMOS scaling from FinFET (current) to Nanosheet (future) device architectures. However, CMOS scaling is slowing down with performance benefits diminishing with each node. At the same time the need for consuming data has gone up exponentially with Deep Learning-based AI algorithms being deployed for this purpose and run on specialized AI hardware such as Graphical Processing Units (GPUs). However, GPUs consume significant power since data transfer occurs from memory to processor. Resistive Processing Units (RPUs) envision artificial neural networks mapped to arrays of nonvolatile memory (NVM) elements that execute operations in-memory and constant time, thereby enabling significant power performance benefits. Many NVM elements are being evaluated as RPUs but suffer from significant non-idealities and are therefore ripe once again for innovation and collaboration across academia and industry.