transform the materials field. In selected instances, the existing tools have been integrated and applied in industrial settings, enabling the first demonstrations of the capabilities of ICME. Physically based models and simulation tools have progressed to the point where ICME is now feasible for certain applications, though much development and validation remain to be done if ICME is to be more broadly adopted. The widespread adoption of ICME approaches will require significant development of models, integration tools, new experimental methods, and major efforts in calibration of models for specific materials systems and validation.
The continued evolution and maturation of computational materials science tools will accelerate the ease and efficiency with which ICME tools can be implemented. To be effective in an ICME environment, all of these tools must be developed in a manner that allows their integration with other tools; this should be a priority for model developers and funding agencies. Modeling approaches that embed uncertainty are also important for advancing ICME. The advantage of improvements in computational capabilities such as parallel processing should be exploited by future CMS and ICME developers.
Although ICME tools will be used in a computational engineering environment, experimental studies and data are also critical for the development of empirical models that can be used where there are gaps in theoretical understanding and that can be used to calibrate and validate ICME models. There are several new experimental methods under development whose maturation will do much to accelerate the widespread development of ICME. These include rapid characterization methods, miniature sampling techniques, and three-dimensional materials characterization techniques. Validation experiments should be a key element of any approach to solve the engineering challenge problems that will be discussed in Chapter 4.
The creation and maintenance of dynamic and open-access repositories for data, databases, and materials taxonomies are essential. These databases can also play a role in linking models at different spatial and temporal scales. Open access databases will reduce redundant research, improve efficiency, and lower the costs of developing ICME tools.
The integration tools that are now available provide working solutions for ICME, but significant infrastructural development will be required to realize the benefits of integration. One forerunner of an ICME capability will be the establishment of curated ICME Web sites that can serve as repositories for data, databases, models for collaboration, and model development and integration. Significant government investments, similar to those awarded by the NIH to the genomics research community, will be required to create and curate the cyberinfrastructure necessary to support ICME. The extent to which this ICME cyberinfrastructure can be made open and accessible will greatly speed up the development of an ICME capability and lower its cost.