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AI Initiative

Accelerating scientific discovery and national security with artificial intelligence

Few technologies promise to revolutionize science as does artificial intelligence (AI).

In recognition of AI’s potential, ORNL has made a significant internal research investment toward an AI Initiative aimed at assisting researchers across domains in accelerating their times to solution and equipping cross-cutting research teams with novel data capabilities to tackle some of the most complex scientific and national security challenges.

The Initiative harnesses the laboratory’s unique suite of expertise, compute capabilities, and user facilities to accelerate scientific breakthroughs and enhance national security. The laboratory is building on a foundation that has enabled two R&D 100 Awards, 10 patents for AI R&D, and recognized leadership in algorithm and application development, and a series of strategic hires is further expanding upon this expertise.

The Initiative has demonstrated new capabilities in materials science, engineering design, accelerated learning, and scalability. ORNL researchers have shown that machine learning algorithms can be used to extract information from signals with low signal-to-noise ratios; developed algorithms capable of accelerating modeling and simulation with very little training data; and designed novel biomimetic neuromorphic devices capable of detecting epileptic seizures.

The Lab’s expertise in algorithm development and its rich history of algorithm deployment in scientific applications, along with its unique data and computing infrastructure, make ORNL the ideal setting in which to realize the potential of AI in missions of national and international importance.

Artificial intelligence for science at ORNL


Director of AI Programs and Distinguished R&D Staff Scientist
Prasanna Balaprakash Profile Picture