University to lead two artificial intelligence institutes


Photo Courtesy of Brian Stauffer

Vikram Adve, professor in Engineering, will lead the AI Institute for Future Agricultural Resilience, Management and Sustainability. Two University-led teams will be paritally funded by a $140 million grant given to seven intelligence institutes across the country.

By Samantha Boyle, Managing Editor for Reporting

A $140 million grant to establish seven intelligence institutes in the United States will help fund two University-led teams, according to the Illinois News Bureau.

The grant is being funded by the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Each new institute will also receive around $20 million over five years.

Vikram Adve, professor in Engineering, will lead the AI Institute for Future Agriculture Resilience, Management and Sustainability, the institute that will be run at the University. This institute is being funded by the USDA-NIFA.

AIFARMS will work on solving major agricultural challenges in terms of machine learning, human-robot interaction and soft-object manipulation.

Huimin Zhao, professor in Engineering, will lead the other institute funded by the NSF, the AI Institute for Molecular Discovery, Synthetic Strategy and Manufacturing.

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This institute will work to speed up chemical synthesis using AI tools. The goal of this institute is to create an open space for thinking, education and community, Zhao told the News Bureau.

“The National Science Foundation and USDA-NIFA recognize the breadth and depth of Illinois expertise in artificial intelligence, agricultural systems and molecular innovation,” Chancellor Robert Jones said. “It is no surprise to me that two of seven new national AI institutes will be led by our campus. I look forward to seeing the results of these new investments in improving agricultural outcomes and innovations in basic and applied research.”

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