Tech & Space
May 20, 2024
Less than
min read

Portugal Unveils AI-Powered 'Marble Vision' to Transform Marble Industry

Portugal's Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) and marble companies in Alentejo are developing an AI-based digitiser to predict the colours and designs inside marble blocks, aiming to revolutionise the global marble market
Portugal Unveils AI-Powered 'Marble Vision' to Transform Marble Industry
Mariana Proenca - Unsplash

Researchers at Portugal's Instituto Superior Técnico (IST), in collaboration with marble companies in the Alentejo region, are developing a revolutionary technology that could transform the global marble market. The project involves creating an AI-powered digitizer capable of predicting the colors and designs hidden within marble blocks before they are sawn.

The technology, currently being developed at the IST's Department of Mineral Resources and Energy Engineering (DER), has the potential to significantly improve efficiency and reduce waste in the marble industry. By accurately predicting the internal characteristics of marble blocks, companies can make more informed decisions about how to cut and utilise the material, maximising its value.

The project is being funded by EU funds, including the Recovery and Resilience Plan (RRP), and involves collaboration with several marble companies, including the Galrão Group, A. Bento Vermelho, and Marmocazi. Additionally, two technology companies specialising in natural stone are participating in the development.

While still in the laboratory stage, the research is being conducted at the Galrão Group's factory in Pero Pinheiro, as well as at two marble quarries in the Alentejo region. The successful implementation of this technology could position Portuguese marble companies at the forefront of the global market, offering a significant competitive advantage.

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