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The Economics Ministry of Baden-Württemberg is giving the MaterialDigital project a boost with an investment of €2.75 million. The aim is to support manufacturing industry by establishing a database of digital twins of materials . First, a material data space is to be set up in Freiburg under the management of the Fraunhofer Institute for Mechanics of Materials (IWM) , which is planned as the base for integration of the digital material twins into networked systems.

The material characteristics that can be accessed will include the behavior of certain materials under various production conditions or across the whole product life cycle, thereby making a wealth of process and behavior data available for simulation to small and medium-size enterprises. Ultimately, the businesses should be able to benefit from shorter development times, improved production processes and more reliable components. One example cited by the project is recording of data about the behavior of an aluminum material in a casting process, together with subsequent, multi-stage heat treatment. This is reminiscent of the Materials Data Space platform that was developed at the Fraunhofer Institute in 2016, which had a similar objective.