The Department of Energy in the US has recently announced its initiative to provide up to $30 million for advanced research in artificial intelligence and machine learning. This fund can be used for both scientific investigation and the management of complex systems.
This initiative comprises two-fold strategies.
Firstly, focusing on the development of artificial intelligence and machine learning for predictive modelling and simulation focused on research across the physical sciences. The technologies ML and AI are considered to offer promising new alternatives to conventional programming methods for computer modelling and simulation. And, secondly, this fund will be utilised on essential ML and AI research for “decision support” in addressing complex systems.
Eventually, the potential applications could include cybersecurity, power grid resilience, and other complex processes where these emerging technologies can make or aid in creating business decisions in real-time.
When asked, Under Secretary for Science Paul Dabbar stated that both these technologies — artificial intelligence and machine learning are among the most powerful tools we have today for both advancing scientific knowledge and managing our increasingly complex technological environment.
He further said, “This foundational research will help keep the United States in the forefront as applications for ML and AI rapidly expand, and as we utilise this evolving technology to solve the world’s toughest challenges such as COVID-19.”
The applications for this initiative will be open to DOE national laboratories, universities, nonprofits, and industry, and according to the peer review, the funding will be awarded.
According to DOE, the planned funding for the scientific machine learning for modelling and simulations topic will be up to $10 million in FY 2020 dollars for projects of two years in duration. On the other hand, the planned funding for the artificial intelligence and decision support for complex systems topic will be up to $20 million, with up to $7 million in FY 2020 dollars and out-year funding contingent on congressional appropriations.