Flowcharts over fragrance: AI helps design novel perfumes
Tech major IBM and Symrise, one of the top global producers of flavours and fragrances, have created industry’s first Artificial Intelligence (AI)-designed perfumes for sale.
The AI-based system named “Philyra” can learn about perfume formulas, raw materials, historical success data and industry trends, IBM Research said in a statement late on Saturday.“Building on previous IBM research using AI to pair flavours and for recipe creation, as well as our new IBM Research AI for Product Composition, we created Philyra,” said Richard Goodwin, Principal Research Scientist, IBM Research.The AI tool uses new and advanced Machine Learning (ML) algorithms to sift through hundreds of thousands of formulas and thousands of raw materials, helping identify patterns and novel combinations.“Philyra does more than serve up inspiration - it can design entirely new fragrance formulas by exploring the entire landscape of fragrance combinations to discover the whitespaces in the global fragrance market,” Goodwin added. When it comes to new perfume design, “Philyra” learns a distance model to identify fragrances that are close in smell to existing fragrances.The larger the distance between a fragrance and its neighbours, the more novel the perfume is predicted to be.Symrise has used “Philyra” to design two perfumes, scheduled to launch in mid-2019.Symrise’s long-term goal is to introduce this technology to their master perfumers around the globe and continue to use the solution for the design of fragrances for personal care and home care products.The company also plans to introduce “Philyra” into their Perfumery School to help train the next generation of perfumers, firmly embedding AI into the heart of its organisation.“Our research continues to push the boundaries of augmenting human expertise using AI and demonstrating how AI can assist in domains where creativity is key,” said Goodwin.Now, perfumers can have an AI apprentice by their side that can help make them more productive, and accelerate the design process by guiding them towards formulas that have never been seen before, he added.
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