About DICE

We offer DICE, a data platform to promote materials science research and accelerate materials development.

The Materials Data Platform Center (DPFC) was established in 2017 as a part of the Research and Services Division of Materials Data and Integrated System (MaDIS) at the National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS). Our mission is to develop and operate DICE to realize the Materials Research Bank (MRB), as one of NIMS's Programs for Strengthening Innovative Materials Development (M3, M-cube).

DICE is an unprecedented system that handles materials data from their points of entry (data collection) to their points of exit (data service). We implemented high-throughput/high-quality data collection/registration systems to serve as the points of entry for data from various sources, such as experimental instruments, literature, and repositories. These data are stored and interconnected by comprehending the data structurally and hierarchically using informatic techniques such as RDF and Linked Data, adding values to the stored data. For points of exit, we will not only be offering various data visualization and analysis software but system services as well, which can assist in solving materials development problems by materials informatics.

DICE_KeyFunctionalities.pngKey functionalities of the materials data platform, DICE.

On this advanced data platform, we will collect various data, convert them, assign metadata, and enhance their values by making them machine-readable. We will drive forward research on data science and information analytic techniques. As a national center for materials information and data, we will be continuously offering quality data and services that should be of great interest to not only users associated with us but to the general public.

Materials research with FAIR data-driven science

Reference link


Mikiko Tanifuji, Asahiko Matsuda, Hideki Yoshikawa. Materials Data Platform - a FAIR System for Data-Driven Materials Science. Proceedings of the 2019 8th International Congress on Advanced Applied Informatics (IIAI-AAI). 2019

DICE common message format schema

We have defined a common metadata schema for research dataset distribution/exchange/storage, with features for not only system-to-system communication but also description of the datasets. The metadata were initially defined by a XML Schema, and has been converted into JSON Schema. The schema has a complex structure, which includes the dataset's bibliographic metadata as well as description of the dataset from the materials science viewpoint.

JSON format

XML format


The Materials Data Repository (MDR) stores and manages materials data using the MDR metadata implemented by referring to the DICE common message format.

See also

Shinji Kikuchi, Takuya Kadohira, Mineharu Suzuki, Hiroyuki Naito, "Architectural design of the research data management platform oriented to generating the value added science data" (in Japanese), IEICE Tech. Rep., vol. 119, no. 66, SC2019-2, pp. 7-17, May 2019. https://mdr.nims.go.jp/concern/publications/m039k565z?locale=en