Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology

Application Areas

Artificial intelligence


Grzybowski and his team pioneered research on non-equilibrium self-assembly processes in chemical systems . They were the first ones to describe nanoscale self-assembly based on electrostatic interactions , and first ones to demonstrate all-nanoparticle electronics. Grzybowski’s team discovered several fundamental phenomena at small scales (e.g., plastic-metals; inverse photoconductors) and is recognized as being the pioneers of reaction-diffusion chemical systems operating in the nano- and microscopic regimes. In 2011, the group solved perhaps the oldest scientific question – originally posed by Thales of Miletus – as to how and why materials charge upon contact with one another. In 2013, they have demonstrated magnetic traps that unlike their optical counterparts can manipulate nanoscopic objects, both magnetic and non-magnetic.

Grzybowski’s most impactful discoveries are in the area of computer-planned organic synthesis and AI forreaction and drug discovery. The Grzybowski group discovered and quantified the general laws governing theNetwork of Organic Synthesis, and created Chematica, the “chemical brain” for the planning of organic syntheses. In 2020, 3they demonstrated how computers can plan syntheses to complex natural products (Nature 2020) and how they can discover new prebiotic syntheses. Grzybowski has a strong track record of research commercialization. The companies he started has achieveda valuation of close to $1 billion. He also advises pharma industry (e.g., Merck) and has managed a portfolio of research grants (from US, Korean and Polish governments totaling >$40 million).

Research Interests

  • Computerized synthesis
  • Artificial intelligence applied to organic chemistry
  • Discovery of new reactions and of new drugs
  • AI for chemical waste management
  • Complex chemical networks and catalytic systems
  • Self-assembly in non-equilibrium regimes
  • Nanomaterials for catalysis
  • Energy storage and nanomedicine


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Associated MAPs

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