Granta's History and Technology Leadership

For twenty years, Granta has pioneered the field of materials information technology. Founded by Professors Mike Ashby and David Cebon as a spin-out from Cambridge University Engineering Department in 1994, the company has grown to support a worldwide customer base of engineering enterprises and universities. Key events in our corporate history include a strategic partnership in 2000 with ASM International, the leading materials science and engineering society, who remain among our main shareholders (see information on ownership). Working with ASM and key customers, particularly through our industry consortia, we have maintained a strong focus on innovation, ensuring that we are providing new technologies and products that meet the needs of our customers.

Granta's history - from original product concept to today's leading materials information technology solutions

Today, Granta is the undisputed materials information technology leader, by any of the following metrics:

Granta Timeline

1994 Granta Design is founded by Mike Ashby and David Cebon from the Cambridge University Engineering Department. The company's unique intellectual property includes: an extensive compilation of materials data; materials property chart (or Ashby chart) methods for presenting and analyzing materials data; the performance index concept - using property charts to identify optimal materials choices for a given engineering application. Granta's first product is the Cambridge Materials Selector software for plotting materials property charts, using them for selection, and for teaching of materials engineering.

University of Cambridge

Mike Ashby and David Cebon - Granta founders

Cambridge Materials Selector

1995-97 Granta's start-up team focuses on developing and refining its materials data library (using the first implementations of Granta's unique data-checking and estimation techniques) and on improving the systematic materials selection methods of the Cambridge Materials Selector.
1998 Granta releases Cambridge Process Selector - the first system to enable systematic process selection.  

CES Selector is launched as the first complete software and database system for computer-aided materials and process selection. Users load the system with databases containing data from Granta, from third-party data sources, or their own data. They filter materials against a set of selection criteria and apply charting and systematic selection tools.

Ashby chart
2000 ASM International, the world's largest professional society for materials engineers, makes a strategic investment in Granta. Granta is now applying its expertise to the management and publication of materials data—for example, supporting web-based access to ASM's extensive materials data handbooks.
ASM International
2001 Granta provides a digital online version of MIL-HDBK-5, the industry standard design data for aerospace alloys.
2002 Granta, ASM, and NASA launch the Material Data Management Consortium (MDMC), a collaboration to help aerospace and energy organizations manage critical materials data. Early members include Rolls- Royce. Granta also releases new tools for plastic selection. The Material Data Management Consortium (MDMC)
2004 First release of GRANTA MI, later the industry standard for enterprise materials data management. GRANTA MI manages materials data throughout its entire lifecycle. This includes capture from testing or other sources, analysis to create approved design data, deployment to the engineers who need it, and maintenance in a secure, version-controlled, and robust enterprise system. The materials data lifecycle
2005 CES EduPack, a focused package of teaching resources to support university-level materials teaching. CES EduPack builds on Granta's materials data and selection tools with content, tailored databases, and supporting resources to enable materials and process teaching across a much wider range of related engineering, science, and design courses. CES EduPack software
2006 Materials Strategy Software Consortium begins a 4-year collaboration with industrial partners, focused on development of tools to enable consistent, effective materials selection, substitution, and cost-optimization across the enterprise. The Materials Strategy Software Consortium
2007 New Materials for Medical Devices database in collaboration with ASM International—a unique resource for device designers. Meanwhile, Boeing joins the MDMC, taking membership to seventeen top aero & energy companies.  
2008 Eurocopter hosts the first meeting of the new Environmental Materials Information Technology (EMIT) Consortium, which will help Granta to develop tools for eco design and for helping to 'design out' the use of toxic and other restricted substances. The Environmental Materials Information Technology Consortium
2010 Granta opens new headquarters at Rustat House and expands Cambridge team to 80 people. Granta's team at the opening of its new headquarters in 2010
2011 Granta opens its first overseas offices (in US & Germany), teams up with engineering software giant Autodesk to deliver a new eco design tool, and announces new software for coatings and composite data management.  
2012 First MI:Materials Gateways—unique applications that embed managed materials data into the standard CAD, CAE, and PLM tools used by engineering professionals, providing tools to help them apply this data in design, analysis, and simulation. MI:Materials Gateway for CAD
2013 MDMC launches Phase II of its Composite Data Management Project, as results from the first phase are implemented to support management of vital composite information at member organizations.  
2014 Granta announces the new Automotive Material Intelligence Consortium ('AutoMatIC') building on increasing interest in the technology among makers of automobiles and off-highway vehicles, and their strategic suppliers. Members inlcude PSA Peugeot Citroen, GM, Jaguar Land Rover. AutoMatIC logo
2015 Granta is selected as a Gartner "cool vendor" and announces new solutions for Additive Manufacturing and supporting multi-organization collaborative projects. An expanding set of industry case studies demonstrates that materials information technology is becoming mature.  
2016 Granta is growing! Building on our success, we have significant recruitment plans in progress. Why not consider joining us? Details here.