Tech startup Quaisr has partnered with security and defence company QinetiQ to explore the use of AI and simulations to discover new materials.
Quaisr was founded in 2020 using research from Imperial and the Alan Turing Institute to deploy and scale up the implementation of digital twins in multinational organisations. Digital twins are virtual replicas of physical systems linked up to their real-life counterparts using sensors to monitor those systems' performances and predict how they would perform in a range of ‘what if’ scenarios.
Digital twins can significantly shorten the discovery cycles for new materials, while engineering-intensive industries like aerospace, defence, energy, and manufacturing are trying to implement digital twins as part of their digitalisation strategies.
Digital twins have many real-world applications. They can be used as powerful tools to optimise the performance of physical systems, such as manufacturing lines or chemical production facilities, in real-time.
Digital twins of innovation processes can significantly shorten the discovery cycles for new materials, while engineering-intensive industries like aerospace, defence, energy, and manufacturing are trying to implement digital twins as part of their broader digitalisation strategies.
However, building out digital replicas that combine data, AI, and simulations is time-consuming and resource-intensive. Quaisr aims to make digital twinning easier and more cost-effective. It offers a digital platform that leverages cloud technologies and on-premises infrastructure so that domain experts can focus on improving and connecting their models and simulations instead of navigating IT infrastructure. The aim is to empower R&D scientists, engineers, data scientists and AI engineers to share data and integrate their workflows, building audit trails and tracking outcomes.
Data, AI and simulations
The company was founded by Imperial and Turing researchers Professor Richard Craster, Imperial’s Dean of Natural Sciences, Professor Omar Matar, Head of Imperial’s Department of Chemical Engineering, Dr Indranil Pan, and Dr Lachlan Mason, and has been backed by venture capital firms Crane Venture Partners in the UK, Acequia Capital in the USA, and international angel investors.
“We link the trinity of data, AI and simulations and connect people siloed in different teams in big multinationals,” explains Dr Assen Batchvarov, Quaisr’s Product Manager. “The Quaisr platform can link and optimise the whole value chain. Innovation teams can now create, connect and consolidate their efforts and leverage the platform’s live data capability to bring outcomes into operations. Equally, R&D engineers can use the platform to iterate on new designs and bring products faster to market”.
The company is providing its platform to QinetiQ as part of an initiative for the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, a UK government agency. The collaboration will provide a proof of concept for using AI and simulation by multidisciplinary teams to develop new materials for defence applications.
Dr Charles Footer, Lead of Advanced Materials and Devices at QinetiQ, said: “The Quaisr platform empowers our experts to link multi-disciplinary knowledge and unleashes exciting AI technologies. This partnership clearly has the potential to revolutionise the discovery of new materials to meet the evolving needs of a plethora of our customers around the world.
"Over the previous decade we have invested in tooling that enables us to deliver cutting-edge innovation. The Quaisr technology brings multiplicative value by empowering our teams to build scalable experiences around these existing tools.”
Dr Lachlan Mason, CEO at Quaisr, said, “We are incredibly excited to partner with QinetiQ. Linking domain experts, data, simulations, and AI is what we are passionate about. This project will allow us to showcase the power of bringing people and tools together."
Article text (excluding photos or graphics) © Imperial College London.
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