Brookhaven National Laboratory and Rutgers University have received $12 million from the federal government to build a massive database to help scientists develop advanced materials for high-temperature superconductors, nuclear fuels and other energy initiatives.

The grant, from the U.S. Department of Energy, will help create a resource for scientists to catalog properties, mathematical theories and other information about experimental materials, helping them to test, refine and create new compounds. The effort, called the Center for Computational Design of Functional Strongly Correlated Materials and Theoretical Spectroscopy, will be led by Rutgers physicist Gabriel Kotliar, who also has a part-time position at Brookhaven.

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"Developing tools to increase our understanding of these most interesting substances . . . could result in the development of important new technologies," Kotliar said.

The funding is one of three federal grants announced Monday to support The White House's Materials Genome Initiative, launched in 2011 to study and develop advanced materials.