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CuspAI raises $30 million to develop GenAI-powered search engine for brand new materials

The modern way of developing latest materials is to make something after which use a pc to examine that the fabric is correct. But what if you happen to flipped that around and used generative AI-driven software to design the fabric from the beginning? That's the premise behind Cambridge, UK-based CuspAIwhich has now secured $30 million in a seed round led by Hoxton Ventures with significant participation from Basis Set Ventures and Lightspeed Venture Partners.

Co-founder and CEO Chad Edwards puts it this manner: “We're turning the old process on its head and saying, 'If you may put materials or molecules in and get properties out, why can't you place properties in and get materials and molecules?'”

The market is dominated by players corresponding to Schrödinger (listed on NASDAQ) and Dassault Systèmeseach of which give software tools for performing computational chemistry and materials simulations.

New to the business is Orbital Materials, which incorporates a part of the team behind Google's DeepMind and has an AI-powered platform that may discover materials from batteries to carbon dioxide-scavenging cells. The company recently raised $16 million in a Series A.

“Just as engines like google made the Internet possible, we imagine we’re on the cusp of a world where you may search the vast space of latest materials and molecules to find latest materials which have precisely the properties you would like. We imagine we’re entering the era of 'materials on demand,'” he said.

According to the corporate, the platform actually works like a search engine for materials and enables the rapid evaluation of a “large variety of novel structures”.

“Civilization has all the time been defined by the materials of its time, so Bronze Age, Stone Age, etc. We imagine we’re entering an age of materials on demand,” he added.

CuspAI only launched this yr and appears to have numerous work ahead of it, but Edwards isn't exactly ranging from scratch.

Its co-founder is Max Welling, a professor and renowned AI pioneer. He was also formerly a distinguished scientist and vp at Microsoft Research and Qualcomm and a professor on the University of Amsterdam. “Our AI can generate and evaluate latest materials on request. For example, you may request a fabric that selectively binds carbon dioxide under certain conditions – the AI ​​then generates, evaluates and optimizes the potential molecular structures that meet exactly these criteria,” he said in an announcement.

Edwards is a chemist who has been involved within the commercialization of deep tech technologies at Google and BASF and most recently at leading quantum computing company Quantinuum.

Geoffrey Hinton, generally known as the “Godfather of AI”, can even function an advisor to the Board of Directors.

In an announcement, Hinton said: “Humanity will face many challenges in the approaching decade. Some of those are brought on by AI, while others could be solved by AI. I’m very impressed with CuspAI and its mission to speed up the design technique of latest materials using AI to curb one among humanity's most pressing challenges: climate change.”

CuspAI believes that AI-engineered materials could have a big impact on carbon capture and storage within the near future.

“We're looking into designing molecular sponges that specifically absorb carbon dioxide from the air,” Edwards said. “When you warmth them, they provide off carbon dioxide, which you’ll be able to either capture and use or bury underground, whichever you would like.”

CuspAI can also be collaborating with Meta on its open science project to find latest materials to combat climate change.

“The Fundamental AI Research (FAIR) team is happy to collaborate with CuspAI on leveraging AI, including our OpenDAC work, to speed up the invention of latest DAC sorbent materials,” said Yann LeCun, VP and Chief AI Scientist at Meta, in an announcement. “The world needs rapid advances in inexpensive carbon capture, and we imagine the team at CuspAI is in an important position to use AI-based materials discovery to this pressing problem.”

Other investors within the round include LocalGlobe, Northzone, Touring Capital, Giant Ventures, FJ Labs, Tiferes Ventures and Zero Prime Ventures. Angel investors corresponding to Mehdi Ghissassi and Dorothy Chou from DeepMind also participated.


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