August 9, 2016 matt.scott

By Matt Scott

LAUNCH is looking to transform the system of chemistry. Beginning today and through October 31, the 2016 LAUNCH Chemistry Innovation Challenge is calling for innovators, entrepreneurs, companies, and organizations to enable predictive chemical design through innovative applications of data in chemistry.

We are looking for solutions and methodologies in which data can support a new model of chemical production and use, replacing current methods with predictive algorithms and accelerating a field-wide shift towards predictive design. The challenge is a collaboration between LAUNCH, the American Chemical Society (ACS) Green Chemistry Institute® and NIKE, Inc. to advance predictive design through five innovation areas: data generation, access, integration, as well as analysis and application.

Who is making game-changing innovations in sustainable chemistry? Who are the chemists using data to revolutionize their field? Who are the data scientists interested in improving the way analysis and research is done? We want to meet them.

If you know chemistry innovators, encourage them to apply to our innovation challenge, introduce them to us using #LAUNCHChemistry on social media, or email us at

We’ve seen how our data revolution has transformed the way we think about economies and markets and genetics and our planet,” says Todd Khozein, Co-Founder of LAUNCH. “I’m excited to see what we can find in chemistry so we can enable an entire generation of manufacturing that sees deep into the future of the things they will make.”

On August 2, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy highlighted this LAUNCH Chemistry Innovation Challenge in conjunction with the 5th anniversary of the Materials Genome Initiative (MGI). President Obama announced MGI in June 2011 to accelerate the development and deployment of new materials. 

“Innovation in smarter chemistry will support our goals of reducing our environmental impacts, creating high-performance materials and ultimately working toward a closed-loop future,” said Cyrus Wadia, VP, Sustainable Business & Innovation, NIKE, Inc. “Breakthroughs in our industry often require the application of new technologies and ideas, and we believe advances in how we generate and use data have the potential to positively transform our business while allowing us to collaborate more effectively with other companies and organizations.”

“High fidelity data is essential in moving science and engineering forward and, at the moment in sustainable and green chemistry, we only have a partial data set available to us,” says David Constable, Director of the ACS Green Chemistry Institute®. “This LAUNCH challenge is focusing on the development of a more complete ecosystem of data that furthers our understanding and ability to make better decisions about the technical performance, use, hazards and risks of chemicals in products from the perspective of wanting to make products that are more sustainable. We are hoping to generate new ways of thinking about collecting, curating, visualizing, and applying key data and information that is broadly available and more easily applied to the grand challenges of sustainability,” Constable adds. 

From now until October 31, we’re seeking data-oriented prototypes, proven technologies, and business models with the potential to scale and disrupt the chemistry status quo. Experts in the LAUNCH Chemistry community will select the top innovative solutions and give them the opportunity to share their work with a world class network of industry pioneers, government organizations, investors, and innovation experts. Teams selected as LAUNCH Chemistry innovators will be supported by the LAUNCH community to scale their technical capacities and bring their products to market. Learn more here

LAUNCH is powered by the innovation agency SecondMuse.