Materials and Molecular Modelling Hub receives £4.5m boost in EPSRC funding to host new UK Tier 2 High Performance Computer

The MMM Hub has received £4.5 million from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to build a national supercomputer centre to improve support for UK researchers making scientific breakthroughs, such as designing better batteries and improving drug design.

The new High Performance Computing system replaces earlier machine ‘Thomas’. The new system will be based at UCL and available for use by UK researchers from MMM Hub partners, to carry out ground-breaking research on the properties of new and existing materials in a range of disciplines, including physics, chemistry, materials science, nanotechnology, biophysics, earth sciences, life, chemical and mechanical sciences.

Since 2016, the Materials and Molecular Modelling Hub led by UCL, has brought together partners in London’s Thomas Young Centre and others across the country to carry out ground-breaking research on the properties of new and existing materials, and this new funding will build on the Hub’s capability.

These include understanding and preventing surface degradation, such as corrosion and wear, on a range of different materials; researching how changes to the recycling of metals can reduce the environmental damage caused by metal extraction; and developing the next generation of materials for solar energy generation.

Professor Angelos Michaelides (UCL Physics & Astronomy), who leads the Hub, said: “Materials are at the heart of almost every modern technology, including energy generation, storage and supply, transportation, electronic devices, defence and security, healthcare, and the environment. 

“Through the Materials and Molecular Modelling Hub, researchers at UCL, the Thomas Young Centre, and other partner organisations will work to obtain a fundamental understanding of materials, leading to new scientific discoveries that may drive economic development.” 

Seven High Performance Computing centres will be supported by a £27 million investment from the EPSRC, part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).

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