This annual symposium is dedicated to the late Erich Bloch, former director of the National Science Foundation who helped endow the Department of Materials Design and Innovation at UB. The symposium is part of the MDI Summer Institute, an extra-mural program of UB’s Department of Materials Design and Innovation that supports a broad range of outreach activities to promote research and education platforms in materials design. This year's conference theme is exploring and harnessing data.
Throughout the symposium, we will examine the challenges in harnessing, using, analyzing and interpreting large volumes and diverse data.
We will welcome leaders from different fields and organizations to describe their approaches to representing and defining data, processing data quickly and efficiently, ensuring a level of certainty in data analysis and interpretation, and recording and analyzing data with a high level of detail and accuracy so that small changes and trends are not missed.
The symposium will also explore the issue of data justice, including equity and fairness in data collection; transparency and accountability in data use; and the inclusion of diverse perspectives in the data collection, analysis and application processes.
|8:00 a.m.||Coffee and Registration |
|8:30-9:00 a.m.||Welcome and Introductions ||Krishna Rajan, SUNY Distinguished Professor and Erich Bloch Chair, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
Kemper Lewis, Dean, School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, University at Buffalo
|9:00-10:40 a.m. ||Session I: Seeking Precision in Ultra-Large Datasets ||Session Chair: Edward Snell, Director, NSF STC BioXFEL; Senior Scientist, CEO of Hauptman-Woodward Medical Institute; Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo|
|Seeing is Believing: Every Atom in its Place ||Thomas F. Kelly, Member, National Academy of Engineering, CEO and Founder, STEAM Instruments, Inc. |
|Transferring Knowledge: From atom locations to materials properties: Computational materials engineering with active learning ||Milica Todorovic; Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, University of Turku, Finland |
|10:40-11:00 a.m.||----------Break---------- |
|11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. ||Session II: Accelerating materials research: Advanced experimental approaches and machine learning ||Session Chair: Prathima Nalam, Assistant Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, UB |
|Multiscale microscopy and spectroscopy techniques for material design and innovation ||Baishakhi Mazumder, Associate Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|Embracing uncertainty in research: the Bayesian approach to materials science ||Kristofer Reyes, Assistant Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|Artificial intelligence assisted 3D microscopy analysis of ceramics ||Prachi Garg, Graduate Student, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|12:00-1:00 p.m.||----------Lunch----------||Boxed lunch will be provided |
|1:00-2:30 p.m. ||Session III: Data Equity, Fairness, and Accuracy ||Session Chair: E. Bruce Pitman, Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|Panel Discussion - Data accuracy, equity, and inclusion || |
Ali McPherson, Director of the Investor Environmental Health Network, Clean Production Action and Niagara Share
Mark Rossi, Executive Director, Clean Production Action
Sheila Davis, Coordinator, Solar Scorecard
|2:30-2:45 p.m.||----------Break---------- |
|2:45-4:15 p.m. ||Session IV: Exploring and harnessing data for clean energy: Opportunities and challenges ||Session Chair: Quanxi Jia, SUNY Distinguished Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|Novel mechanical and chemical approaches to create efficient power sources via nanoscale material manipulations ||Jung-Hun Seo, Associate Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|Materials innovations for clean energy: exploring and harnessing data and models ||Olga Wodo, Associate Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo|
|Two-dimensional post-graphene materials for clean energy applications ||Yu Fu, Graduate Student, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|4:30-5:15 p.m.||Session V: Student Jamboree || |
Session Chairs: Scott Broderick, Associate Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo
Eric Osei-Agyemang, Distinguished Research Fellow, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo
|Student Presentations ||Presentations by graduate students from the Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|5:30-7:30 p.m.||Poster Session and Reception (Salvatore Lounge, Davis Hall) |
|8:30-9:00 a.m.||Welcome ||Robin Schulze, Dean, College of Arts and Sciences, University at Buffalo |
|9:00-10:30 a.m.||Session VI: Accelerating Discovery with Confidence ||Session Chair: Erik Einarsson, Associate Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|Fast experiments for materials to devices: How to use knowledge-augmented risk assessment to reach a well-informed decision for complex problems || |
Kristen Schmidt, Manager, Accelerated Materials Discovery, Vice-Chair of Physical Sciences Council, IBM
|Fast computing for accelerated discovery: Small data is (and may always be?) the problem|| |
Francis J. Alexander, Deputy Director, Computational Science Initiative, Brookhaven National Laboratory
|10:30-11:00 a.m.||----------Break---------- |
|11:00 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.||Session VII: Seeking Knowledge with Clarity ||Session Chair: Fei Yao, Assistant Professor, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|Harnessing ontology for intelligent design ||Christophe Nicolle, Professor, University of Burgundy, France. |
|Achieving Climate Goals – balancing economic viability with environmental justice ||Dennis Elsenbeck, Head of Energy and Sustainability, Phillips Lytle LLP |
|12:15-12:30 p.m.||Concluding Comments ||Krishna Rajan, SUNY Distinguished Professor and Erich Bloch Chair, Department of Materials Design and Innovation, University at Buffalo |
|12:30-2:00 p.m.||Lunch and Networking ||Boxed lunch will be provided |
Kelly received his Ph.D. in materials science and engineering from MIT in 1981. He was a professor of Materials Science and Engineering at UW-Madison from 1983 until 2001 where he also served as director of the Materials Science Center from 1991 to 1999. Dr. Kelly founded Imago Scientific Instruments to commercialize the Local Electrode Atom Probe or LEAP. The LEAP is a major advance for atom probe tomography by capturing three-dimensional atom-by-atom “images” of materials at high speeds and high resolution. In 2010, Imago was acquired by Cameca Instruments where Kelly served as vice president for innovation until 2018. He is currently the founder and CEO of Madison-based Steam Instruments, which is developing a high-performance mass spectrometer for use in life sciences applications.
Tom Kelly has been active in the fields of analytical electron microscopy, atom probe microscopy, rapidly solidified materials, and electronic and superconducting materials for over 40 years. He has published over 250 papers and 17 patents in these fields in that time. Tom has driven innovation in instrumentation for atom probe tomography over the past two decades. He continues to pursue microscopy innovations such as atomic-scale tomography by developing new detector technologies and combining atom probe tomography with electron microscopy in a single instrument.
Dr. Todorovic moved from Serbia to the UK to study physics at University College London and obtained her DPhil in Materials Science from Merton College at the University of Oxford in 2008. She went to work at the National Institute for Materials Science (Japan) and Universidad Autonoma de Madrid (Spain), where she specialized in the development and HPC applications of large-scale first-principles calculations. She joined Patrick Rinke’s CEST group at Aalto University, Finland in 2015, and joined the University of Turku in 2021 as an Assistant Professor of Materials Engineering. Dr. Todorovic’s focus is on organic/inorganic interfaces and data-driven materials science. She studies the interface of machine learning algorithms with quantum mechanical simulations of materials to optimize material functionality and specializes in improving the performance of organic and inorganic components in solar cell devices.
McPherson received her BA from the University of New Hampshire and is a graduate of the LEAD program at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
McPherson has been leading IEHN since January 1, 2018. The Investor Environmental Health Network is a collaborative partnership of investment managers, advised by nongovernmental organizations, concerned about the financial and public health risks associated with corporate toxic chemicals policies. Alexandra co-founded Clean Production Action (CPA) in the U.S. in 2001, where she served as Managing Director for its first decade. Alexandra served on the national advisory board of EPEAT (Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool) and has published on chemicals management in the electronics sector. She currently serves also as Principal of Niagara Share, a multi-stakeholder initiative promoting sustainable economic development in the Buffalo/Niagara region of upstate New York. McPherson has spent over twenty years scaling environmental solutions through the development of new organizations, projects, and partnerships. She co-leads the Collaborative for the Regenerative Economy (CoRE), a multi-million-dollar material innovation, and clean production program for clean energy technologies, with the University at Buffalo's Materials Design and Innovation Department and Clean Production Action (CPA).
Dr. Rossi received his Ph.D. in Environmental Policy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Dr. Rossi co-founded the Chemical Footprint Project (CFP), a first-of-its-kind initiative to quantitatively measure chemical footprints and allow manufacturers and retailers to benchmark and communicate their progress in chemicals management performance and in reducing potentially hazardous chemicals relative to industry peers.
He is the founder of BizNGO, a collaboration of businesses, NGOs, and governments that work together to create solutions for safer chemicals and sustainable materials. In 2018, Dr. Rossi co-created GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals, a globally-recognized chemical hazard assessment method used by governments and businesses in the electronics, apparel, and building sectors to identify safer alternatives to toxic chemicals. In 2017, Mark led CPA’s launch of GreenScreen Certified™, a certification program for products that meet rigorous GreenScreen criteria.
Dr. Rossi’s career includes stints at the Tellus Institute, Massachusetts Toxics Use Reduction Institute, and Health Care Without Harm.
Sheila Davis holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Santa Cruz and served as a journalist, state legislative aide, and community development specialist. She joined the staff of Silicon Valley Toxic Coalition (SVTC). Ms. Davis, Founder of the Solar Scorecard Project, has provided more than 25 years of advocacy, research, and policy development in the field of sustainable electronics.
She has played a leadership role in shaping environmental policy in the high-tech industry. In 1996 Davis researched and developed the first electronic recycling legislation to reach the California Governor’s desk and in 1999 spearheaded the first pilot programs in the country to collect and recycle electronic waste from the residential curbside. Sheila’s research, advocacy, and policy development led to a successful ban on hazardous electronic waste from California municipal landfills and the subsequent passage of the first electronic recycling legislation in the nation and has led investigations into e-waste dumping in India and the use of US prison labor in electronic recycling. Under Davis Tenure, SVTC launched the Sustainable Solar Initiative, and release the “Toward a Just and Sustainable Solar Industry,” report which outlined the environmental impacts of the solar industry.
Dr. Schmidt received her Ph.D. in polymer physics from the University of Bayreuth, Germany, and continued her career at the University of California, Santa Barbara, BASF, and SLAC National Laboratory before joining IBM in 2014. Currently, Dr. Schmidt is managing the accelerated materials discovery group at IBM Research in Almaden. Her team develops AI solutions to help scientific experts discover and invent faster. She is also the vice-chair of the physical science council and in this role, she supports high-risk, high-reward exploratory research at IBM research.
Dr. Alexander received his PhD from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey.
Dr. Alexander joined the Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory in 2017 as the Deputy Director of the Computational Science Initiative. He came from DOE’s Los Alamos National Laboratory, where he was the acting division leader of the Computer, Computational, and Statistical Sciences (CCS) Division. During his more than 20 years at Los Alamos, he held several leadership roles, including as leader of the CCS Division’s Information Sciences Group and leader of the Information Science and Technology Institute. Dr. Alexander first joined Los Alamos in 1991 as a postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Nonlinear Studies. He returned to Los Alamos in 1998 after doing postdoctoral work at the Institute for Scientific Computing Research at DOE’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and serving as a research assistant professor at Boston University’s Center for Computational Science.
Dr. Christophe Nicolle received his Ph.D. from the Université Bourgogne in Computer Science. Dr. Nicolle is currently a full professor at the Université de Bourgogne (UB), France. He is the founder and director of the Distributed Artificial Intelligence and Knowledge (CIAD) Laboratory, Université Bourgogne Franche-Comté, France. He is the founder and head of the Checksem business unit with the University of Burgundy. He has authored more than 180 research articles in international journals, conferences, and workshops. His research interests include knowledge representation and reasoning.
Dr. Nicolle’s research focuses on knowledge engineering and more specifically on causal reasoning. It is a branch of artificial intelligence that uses decidable ontologies to represent human know-how. This is the basis for creating Explicit Artificial Intelligence. In addition, he uses this approach by combining it with IoT, Big Data, and Deep Learning. He built several Distributed Artificial Intelligences by aggregating several types of reasoning. These systems have been developed in partnership with many French start-ups (Active3D, Wittym, Ezakus, ...). Dr. Nicolle applies these systems to several areas: management of knowledge lifecycle in the field of packaging, forensic analysis in the field of cybercrime, smart building, and smart city or distributed reasoning on smart camera networks (they see but tell rather than transmit videos), Predictive analysis of vineyard lifecycle.
Dennis Elsenbeck received his master’s degree in applied engineering from the University at Buffalo and his MBA degree from the University of Rochester.
Mr. Elsenbeck provides consulting services on a broad range of energy-related opportunities encompassing a forward view of supply, distribution, and demand options. In his leadership role with a major U.S. utility for nearly 30 years, At Phillips Lytle, he provides business perspectives on long-term policies and the economic landscape. He assists clients with due diligence and regulatory compliance on energy transactions; regulatory counseling involving Public Service Commission proceedings; energy procurement and utility negotiations involving government entities and municipalities; procurement consulting regarding the reduction of energy costs and review of economic incentives; market-driven integrated resource planning and identifying commercial and technical issues associated with energy-related opportunities. Mr. Elsenbeck helps clients move critical energy projects forward by providing creative solutions and overcoming project challenges. He works to develop the voice of the consumer in energy policy and bill impacts as sustainability becomes a focus of energy policy. Mr. Elsenbeck collaborates with clients in shaping the “utility of the future.”
Mr. Elsenbeck is a well-recognized expert in the energy field and is a highly sought-after lecturer on a variety of topics across the U.S.
This year's Erich Bloch Symposium will be held in Davis Hall, University at Buffalo, North Campus.
Guests can park in Jarvis Lot, across the street from Davis Hall, off of White Road. Ticketing will be suspended during the Symposium.
Erich Bloch (January 9, 1925 – November 25, 2016) was a German-born American electrical engineer and administrator. He was involved with developing IBM’s first transistorized supercomputer, 7030 Stretch, and mainframe computer, System/360. He served as director of the National Science Foundation from 1984 to 1990.
Bloch, the son of a Jewish businessman and housewife, lost his parents in the Holocaust, survived the war in a refugee camp in Switzerland and immigrated in 1948 to the United States. He studied electrical engineering at ETH Zurich and received his bachelor of science in electrical engineering from the University of Buffalo.
Bloch joined IBM after graduating in 1952. He was engineering manager of IBM’s STRETCH supercomputer system and director of several research sites during his career. In June 1984, Ronald Reagan nominated Bloch to succeed Edward Alan Knapp as director of the National Science Foundation. The same year, he was elected a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences. In 1985, Bloch was awarded one of the first National Medals of Technology and Innovation along with Bob O. Evans and Fred Brooks for their work on the IBM System/360.
After stepping down as director of the National Science Foundation, Bloch joined the Council on Competitiveness as its first distinguished fellow. The IEEE Computer Society awarded him the Computer Pioneer Award in 1993 for high speed computing. In 2002, the National Science Board honored Bloch with the Vannevar Bush Award. He was made a Fellow of the Computer History Museum in 2004 “for engineering management of the IBM Stretch supercomputer, and of the Solid Logic Technology used in the IBM System/360, which revolutionized the computer industry.”
In 2014, Bloch donated $1.5 million to the University at Buffalo to establish the Erich Bloch Endowed Chair for the new Department of Materials Design and Innovation.