How can we use AI to discover new materials faster?

CIFAR's Global Call for Ideas invited applicants from all over the world to propose an important research question they want to address. We chose 12 finalists, and will announce the final selection in May. Find out more about this finalist.

The Democratizing Molecular Innovation program will develop self-driving laboratories powered by AI and robotics to make it faster and easier to discover new materials, and revolutionize the way we discover and design the world around us.

Humans so far have made about 100 million different materials, but there are exponentially more new ones waiting to be discovered. These new materials could tackle some the world’s biggest problems, creating the next generation of pharmaceuticals, new materials for clean energy production, biodegradable plastics that would remove tonnes of garbage from landfills, and much more.

Members in this program will work on developing integrated materials acceleration platforms that incorporate advances from chemical synthesis, robotics and artificial intelligence to speed up the scientific discovery cycle.


  •   Alán Aspuru-Guzik is a CIFAR Senior Fellow in the Bio-inspired Solar Energy program and the Canada 150 Research Chair in Theoretical & Quantum Chemistry at the University of Toronto.
  •   Jason Hein is an assistant professor of chemistry at the University of British Columbia.

Find out more about the other short-listed Global Call proposals