Polymer Nanocomposite Data: Curation, Frameworks, Access and Potential for Discovery and Design

With the advent of the materials genome initiative (MGI) in the United States and a similar focus on materials data around the world, a number of materials data resources and associated vocabularies, tools, and repositories have been developed. While the majority of systems focus on slices of computational data with an emphasis on metallic alloys, NanoMine is an open source platform with the goal of curating and storing widely varying experimental data on polymer nanocomposites (polymers doped with nanoparticles) and providing access to characterization and analysis tools with the long-term objective of promoting facile nanocomposite design. Data on over 2500 samples from the literature and individual laboratories has been curated to date into NanoMine, including 230 samples from the papers bound in this virtual issue. This virtual issue represents an experiment of the flexibility of the data repository to capture the unique experimental metadata requirements of many data sets at one time and to challenge the authors to participate in the curation of their research data associated with a given publication. In principle, NanoMine offers a FAIR platform in which data published in papers becomes directly Findable and Accessible via simple search tools, with open metadata standards that are Interoperable with larger materials data registries, and allows easy Reuse of data, e.g. benchmarking against new results. Our hope is that with time, platforms such as this one could capture much of the newly published data on materials and form nodes in an interconnected materials data ecosystem which would allow researchers to robustly archive their data, add to the growing body of readily accessible data, and enable new forms of discovery by application of data analysis and design tools.

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Our evolving semantics=driven data resource, named NanoMine, is an open access, user friendly, living, growing, data resource for the polymer nanocomposites community that is scalable and enables improved understanding of processing – structure - property relationships and thus facilitates faster nanocomposite design and insertion into advanced applications. By bringing together the data that is scattered throughout the public literature and private files and creating a protocol for recording and tagging data, this resource is an unprecedented compilation of information that is accessible.

The MaterialsMine Team brings together expertise across five research institutions in the fields of mechanics, materials, design, manufacturing, data science, and computer science to build and develop an open-source, user-friendly materials data resource guided by FAIR principles, with current modules geared toward research communities in the domains of polymer nanocomposites (NanoMine) and mechanical metamaterials (MetaMine).