The gap between fundamental research and successful industrial innovation is commonly called the innovation valley of death. Bridging this valley quite often calls for tailored materials to be developed as fast as possible and this is the point where modelling and simulation can make a difference. Building this bridge calls for a focus of R&D efforts on industrial value chains, ranging from raw materials over materials to components and ends up in products.
Within industrial value chains, CAE is today widely used at a component level (e.g. continuum or macro-scale and some projection to micro-scale) using for instance FE and CFD tools, or on system level using MBS and flow chart simulators. These tools are successfully used for example in the automotive and in the chemical industry. The next generation of CAE tools are expected to extend this in a multi-scale approach by nano scale modelling, a particular strength of the European research landscape, upstream the value chain to Computer Aided Materials Engineering.
In order to fully unlock the potential of Materials Modelling at nano scales or molecular and atomistic when required, a supporting council, the European Materials Modelling Council EMMC (http://emmc.info) has been set up in a bottom up fashion. Wide European Stakeholder consultations have been conducted in 2014 and as a result, it is proposed that the Horizon 2020 LEIT Work Programme 2016-2017 should be used to exploit Materials Modelling with a focus on successful transfer to industry.
The EMMC has a clear mission: within 5 years Materials Modelling at nano scales should become an integral and integrated part of industrial R&D. The approach of the EMMC is to start from industrial challenges by modelling of Key Performance Indicators (KPI) based on experimental data repositories and interoperability of predictive Materials Modelling software tools. Decision Support Systems will integrate the KPI modelling and interpolate the information gathered from experiment and simulation in order to identify the set of best compromises between KPI’s and business related cost measures. Once the mission of the EMMC is fulfilled, CAE engineers will be equipped with powerful tools for materials engineering as natural extension to the CAE workflows used today.
Peter Klein is Senior Scientist at the Fraunhofer ITWM, and resides in Kaiserslautern, Germany. He holds a PhD in Physics from the Technical University of Kaiserslautern, Germany. During his 16 years at the ITWM he held various R&D roles at several departments, covering, among others, fluid dynamics, parallelization, molecular dynamics, development of production devices and medical applications. Since his PhD thesis, he is working on multiscale models for materials, with a focus on surface and interface related phenomena, and their implementation on platforms supporting concurrency. Actually, he is working on the integration of these software tools in Decision Support Systems for scientific and industrial challenges. He had been a guest lecturer in 2006 at the University of Catania, Italy, teaching molecular methods in materials modelling. He received the 2006 Bunshah Award of the American Vacuum Society (Best Paper Award of ICMCTF), was member of a team receiving an IBM Faculty Award in 2006, and received the Fraunhofer Innovation Award in 2009. He holds a software patent on parallelization strategies.
Peter Klein is a member of the European Materials Modelling Council EMMC and actively participates in two Working Groups: Business Decision Support Systems and Translators.