WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue University nanoHUB.org, a web platform for online scientific simulations and computing, seminars, and interactive courses has been chosen as one of the recipients of a 2020 R&D 100 Award.

nanoHUB competed in the software/services category with a proposal titled “nanoHUB: Making Simulation and Data Pervasive.” Winners in each category are recognized for their innovation in developing new products, technologies, and materials in the past year. This prestigious award was established in 1963 and recognizes the year’s most revolutionary developments in science and technology. Past R&D 100 Award winners include Fortune 500 companies, academic laboratories, and all sizes of organizations in between.

Founded at Purdue in 1998 by professor Mark Lundstrom, now the Scifres Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering the acting dean of the College of Engineering, and supported by the National Science Foundation since 2002, nanoHUB grew into a global resource that serves 19,000-plus simulation users and 2 million visitors every year. Based in Purdue’s Discovery Park, nanoHUB advances its mission to accelerate innovation by making cutting-edge, research-grade simulation tools and the associated data available as easy-to-use Apps available in a web browser. This frictionless access allows researchers to work without barriers, educators to provide richer experiences for their students, and students to learn by rapid virtual experimentation.

“The usability by non-experts and availability to anyone enabled the translational impact outside small research groups,” said professor Gerhard Klimeck, the nanoHUB director at Purdue University.

Detailed usage analytics demonstrated penetration of the apps into structured university education and use in research. The median time from tool publication to adoption into structured education was measured as less than 6 months. nanoHUB demonstrated a paradigm shift in scientific publications as these apps are now recognized by the Web-of-Science and Google Scholar as proper scientific publications. 

“We are excited to be chosen and proud to stand alongside other world-changing innovators,” said Jared West, communications specialist for Network for Computational Nanotechnology at Purdue.

Since 2002, nanoHUB has been the premier open and free platform for computational research, education, and collaboration in nanotechnology, materials science and related fields. The platform accelerates innovation by making scientific software and associated data available and useful to the research, development, and education communities, removing traditional barriers of computational expertise and access to specialized hardware. It does so by providing a simulation platform for developers to easily transform their products into apps that run in the cloud with a simple interface presented through a web browser. Thus, domain experts including researchers, instructors and students can focus on the application of these products to advance their fields. nanoHUB has changed how people from around the world consume simulations, using over 650 online apps driven by powerful scientific software. In addition, 2 million visitors from around the world access its 7,000 online resources, including seminars, cutting-edge courses, animations, and teaching materials.

“Importantly, nanoHUB’s technology increases access to advanced simulation tools and hardware. Anyone with an internet connection can learn about machine learning, electronics or materials science with hands-on simulations without having to install any software,” said professor Alejandro Strachan, professor of materials engineering and nanoHUB deputy director.

West said, “nanoHUB would like to thank our users and content contributors as well as our partners at Purdue University and elsewhere around the globe for all the support they have given us over the years. We couldn’t have done it without you.”

About Purdue University

Purdue University is a top public research institution developing practical solutions to today’s toughest challenges. Ranked the No. 5 Most Innovative University in the United States by U.S. News & World Report, Purdue delivers world-changing research and out-of-this-world discovery. Committed to hands-on and online, real-world learning, Purdue offers a transformative education to all. Committed to affordability and accessibility, Purdue has frozen tuition and most fees at 2012-13 levels, enabling more students than ever to graduate debt-free. See how Purdue never stops in the persistent pursuit of the next giant leap at https://purdue.edu/.

Writer: Makenna Fitzgerald 

Media contact: Jim Bush, 765-336-1909, jsbush@purdue.edu 

Source: Gerhard Klimeck, gekco@purdue.edu

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