Visual representation of the intersection of catalysis and machine learning

NSF Research Traineeship

The Internet of Catalysis is a National Science Foundation Research Traineeship (NRT) program at the University of Kansas. The goal of this program to make data driven discoveries at the frontiers of science & engineering.

Explore the NRT

Learn more about the program details, research components, and people involved.

Why is this training needed? 

Building common ground across disciplines will enable researchers to mine, organize, and exploit the myriad data sources relevant to chemical reactions. Trainees will work together to design novel software and machine learning tools to explore uncharted territories in chemistries that rely on catalysts. This new approach to catalysis may lead to breakthrough discoveries for real-world problems facing society today.

Why catalysts? 

This program focuses on catalysts because these materials help reshuffle molecules into many types of products.  From fibers to fuels, paints to plastics, drugs to detergents, catalysts are crucial to society.

How to harness data? 

We use Natural Language Processing and other machine learning tools to extract and analyze data from catalysis experiments or publications. This will allow researchers to more effectively—and quickly—uncover viable solutions to challenging catalyst-reliant chemistries.

What is the overarching goal?

We envision that the burgeoning “Internet of Catalysis” will have a similar transformative impact as the "Internet of Things" (IoT), which is changing everything from how we shop to how we travel. Our goal is to change how scientists and engineers do research. By combining novel training and data harnessing techniques, we hope to reveal hidden properties that can activate a desired reaction. In other words, we are using computing power to drive discovery.

Inclusion and Belonging

Successfully integrating data and chemical sciences requires that we recruit, train, retain, and mentor diverse cohorts of trainees. In this program, we work together with individuals from a range of educational and cultural backgrounds. We aim to create a space where everyone feels valued, respected, and appreciated. We encourage trainee applications from a diversity of backgrounds and experiences to enrich our program. We also uphold the University of Kansas’ strategic priorities for a more socially diverse, equitable, and inclusive KU.