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Local inventors pushing limits of computing to solve challenges

ORNL researchers recognized for cutting edge work.
ORNL researchers use supercomputing to solve problems, push technology to new limits. Photo...
ORNL researchers use supercomputing to solve problems, push technology to new limits. Photo courtesy: ORNL(WVLT)
Published: Jan. 7, 2021 at 6:23 PM EST
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OAK RIDGE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Thomas Potok said advances in supercomputing can help with everything from medical research to manufacturing.

Potok said he and colleagues at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are working on even more advanced ways of teaching computers to work like the human brain. But for now, they used the world-renowned computer at ORNL to sort through hundreds of thousands of more documents than a human could review in a day.

“Then can we use the Summit Computer to say what are the connections across this vast amount of literature,” said Potok. “And then try to predict what are the future research directions that could potentially solve this problem?”

Potok and Sergei Kalinin have both earned the Battelle Distinguished Inventor title for their work at the laboratory. Kalinin said he is hopeful his research on looking at materials on the atomic level can eventually improve the way we can make things. “What we are thinking about is you know 3-D printing doesn’t have to stay on the micron level as it is now. Maybe we can push the 3-D printing to the atomic level.”

Kalinin and colleagues are using electron microscopes and computing to greatly increase how they can study and manipulate materials. “But the vision that we have is to take the supercomputers that ORNL has and convince them to move the microscope directly.”

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