Umicore signs AI platform agreement with Microsoft to accelerate battery materials development

Circular materials technology group Umicore has entered into an agreement with Microsoft to use artificial intelligence (AI) to facilitate and accelerate its research in battery material technologies for electric vehicles.

Image © Jomic - Adobe Stock.

The Battery Materials AI platform will take advantage of Microsoft’s Azure OpenAI Service, extended with a multitude of unpublished, specific scientific AI Models. It will be operated in a Umicore proprietary environment with full IP securitization. Umicore will create a tailored AI environment that will analyze, synthesize and bring together decades of data from Umicore’s proprietary battery materials research and development.

“Umicore is keen to maximize the vast battery technology know-how it has acquired since it began researching battery materials in the mid-1990s,” said Mathias Miedreich, CEO of Umicore.

“With the support of Microsoft, Umicore will be the frontrunner in applying AI as a tool for our battery scientists to win time, efficiency and scale in our innovations while safeguarding our IP in this significant R&D area. It will help us fully leverage all compelling internal and external data, to formulate new materials smarter and remain at the forefront in understanding and pre-empting customer needs in this fast-growing market.”

Umicore has been using materials, process and data modeling for many years now as essential tools for product development. AI and machine learning have over the last years added another dimension and have already resulted in Umicore’s filing of the first AI-enabled patents in battery materials.

Umicore and Microsoft signed their agreement at the recent World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland where “Artificial Intelligence as a Driving Force for the Economy and Society” was one of the event’s key themes.