The project “Commercialization study of BigDFT for chemistry applications” (BigDFT4CHEM) has won the call for Spin-off Initiatives (SPI) launched by the EXDCI-2 consortium. The aim of BigDFT4CHEM is to study the market and commercialization possibilities of the open source code BigDFT applied to the chemical industry, and to contribute to closing the gap between the scientific “gem” and its commercial application. The project will receive €65,000 in funding for a business-oriented assessment and will start its activities in February 2020.
The chemical industry plays a central role in the discovery and development of materials and chemicals, and it will be the main target market for BigDFT4CHEM. The goal of this project is to assess the market potential of BigDFT, determine the steps needed for commercialization (as Software-as-a-Service) and explore its integration into the Nextmol's platform to facilitate its transfer from academia to the market. In addition, BigDFT4CHEM plans to conduct a use case to demonstrate the benefits of the gem.
The objective of the awarded SPI initiative is threefold:
- to better understand the applicability of BigDFT in an industrial context and assess its market potential;
- to define the strategy to make BigDFT a product and include it into Nextmol's platform; and
- to elaborate a business plan for the commercialization of BigDFT.
BigDFT is a Density Functional Theory code for the simulation of materials at atomistic level developed by several European research institutions and a flagship code of the H2020 “MAterials design at the eXascale” Centre of Excellence in materials modelling, simulations and design (MaX CoE).
“We are glad to hear that our project has been awarded. One of the first steps will be to assess the market potential and applicability of BigDFT in the chemical industry, with the objective of guiding and co-designing the integration of the code into our platform in order to optimally meet the needs of future industrial users”, says Monica de Mier, CEO at Nextmol.
The BigDFT4CHEM consortium, formed by Nextmol (coordinator), CEA Grenoble, and the Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC), unites the scientific knowledge and know-how of the software structure (CEA) with expertise in HPC and massively parallel computing (BSC) and the capacity to commercialize the product (Nextmol).
About the EXDCI Call for Spin-off Initiatives (SPI)
Due to the fact that today’s EU funded R&I projects are not yet exploited sufficiently for pushing novel technologies towards SMEs and start-ups, EXDCI-2 launched its first call for spin-off initiatives (SPI) last summer. With this initiative, EXDCI-2 aims to address the transition gap between the results of a HPC R&I project and a market product.