# Automated synthesis of oxygen-producing catalysts from Martian meteorites by a robotic AI chemist

These costs vary depending on the volume of units produced or services rendered. Variable costs rise as production increases and falls as the volume of output decreases. Furthermore, this ratio is also useful in determining the pricing of your products and the impact on profits due to change in sales. Accordingly, in the Dobson Books Company example, the contribution margin ratio was as follows. Thus, the contribution margin ratio expresses the relationship between the change in your sales volume and profit.

For variable costs, the company pays \$4 to manufacture each unit and \$2 labor per unit. The closer a contribution margin percent, or ratio, is to 100%, the better. The higher the ratio, the more money is available to cover the business’s overhead expenses, or fixed costs.

## Contribution Margin Ratio: Definition, Formula, and Example

It is important to assess the contribution margin for break-even or target income analysis. The target number of units that need to be sold in order for the business to break even is determined by dividing the fixed costs by the contribution margin per unit. Similarly, we can then calculate the variable cost per unit by dividing the total variable costs by the https://www.bookstime.com/ number of products sold. Consider the
following contribution margin income statement of XYZ
private Ltd. in which sales revenues, variable expenses,
and contribution margin are expressed as percentage of sales. Suppose Company A has the following income statement with revenue of 100,000, variable costs of 35,000, and fixed costs of 20,000.

• We found that the Model-guided OPT catalyst possesses the highest double-layer capacitance, which is about twice that of either the Exp-197 or Exp-guided OPT catalyst.
• Variable costs rise as production increases and falls as the volume of output decreases.
• Variable costs are not typically reported on general purpose financial statements as a separate category.
• The higher the ratio, the more money is available to cover the business’s overhead expenses, or fixed costs.
• Also known as dollar contribution per unit, the measure indicates how a particular product contributes to the overall profit of the company.

Our study provides a demonstration that an advanced AI chemist can, without human intervention, synthesize OER catalysts on Mars from local ores. Particularly powerful is the in situ optimization, which seamlessly combines the experimental data and computational data during the synthesis process, greatly accelerating the generation of a reliable model and finding of an optimal formula. The established protocol and system, which are generic and adaptive, are expected to advance automated material discovery and synthesis of chemicals for the occupation and exploration of extraterrestrial planets. Mars has for decades attracted intensive scientific exploration and research in countries worldwide. Finding signs of past life and building potentially habitable regions on Mars have long been a dream of humanity. In situ resource utilization on Mars will be applied to substantially reduce the cost and complexity of human missions, enabling sustainable exploration by utilizing local resources to produce necessary supplies.

## AccountingTools

The CM ratio is particularly valuable in situations where trade-offs must be made between more dollar sales of one product versus more dollar sales of another. Generally speaking, when trying to increase sales, products that yield the greatest amount of contribution margin per dollar of sales should be emphasized. A low or negative contribution margin indicates a product line or business may not be that profitable, so it is not wise to continue making the product at its current sales price level unless it is a very high volume product. Other examples include services and utilities that may come at a fixed cost and do not have an impact on the number of units produced or sold.

Then we trained the second NN model by using three computed OER activity descriptors and 243 sets of compositions as inputs and their corresponding experimental overpotentials as output (Fig. 2d). By concatenating these two NN models, the OER overpotentials for all 29,902 compositions can be easily predicted, creating a much larger dataset for Bayesian optimization10 to generate the optimal formula for a desired OER catalyst (Fig. 3c). If you want to reduce your variable expenses — and thereby increase your contribution margin ratio — start by controlling labor costs.

## What is the Contribution Margin Used For?

However, ink pen production will be impossible without the manufacturing machine which comes at a fixed cost of \$10,000. This cost of the machine represents a fixed cost (and not a variable cost) as its charges do not increase based on the units produced. Such fixed costs are not considered in the contribution margin calculations. As mentioned above, contribution margin refers to the difference between sales revenue and variable costs of producing goods or services. This resulting margin indicates the amount of money available with your business to pay for its fixed expenses and earn profit. The Indirect Costs are the costs that cannot be directly linked to the production.

The contribution margin is the foundation for break-even analysis used in the overall cost and sales price planning for products. The contribution margin should be relatively high, since it must be sufficient to also cover fixed expenses and administrative overhead. Also, the measure is useful for determining whether to allow a lower price in special pricing situations. If the contribution margin ratio is excessively low or negative, it would be unwise to continue selling a product at that price point, since the company would have considerable difficulty earning a profit over the long term.

## Sample Calculation of Contribution Margin

In this example, we will calculate the contribution margins of the firm per unit. The contribution margins for the sale of the pen would be \$4, and selling this pen would increase the profit of the firm by \$4. Doing this break-even analysis helps FP&A (financial planning & analysis) teams determine the appropriate sale price for a product, the profitability of a product, and the budget allocation for each project.

To facilitate the work of the AI chemist on Mars, we proposed a double-layer workflow for the on-site synthesis of OER electrocatalysts (Fig. 1). We can calculate the contribution margin of the pen by using the formula given below. The interesting thing about contribution margin ratio is that you can perform the calculation anytime to achieve a unique view into your business. Because to really understand your business, you have to control your contribution margin ratio. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and escalating tensions with China, American companies are actively seeking alternatives to mitigate their supply chain risks and reduce dependence on Chinese manufacturing.

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After determining the optimal metal ratio with minimum overpotential, we performed detailed comparisons of other electrochemical parameters (Supplementary Figs. 18–20). We derived the trend of the reaction activation energy from the Tafel slope. The electrochemical surface area reflects the chemisorption capacity of the reacting substrate and the exposure of surface active sites. This parameter can be estimated by measuring the Helmholtz double-layer capacitance, allowing comparison of the intrinsic electrochemical activity of different catalysts20. We found that the Model-guided OPT catalyst possesses the highest double-layer capacitance, which is about twice that of either the Exp-197 or Exp-guided OPT catalyst.

Some income statements report net sales as the only sales figure, while others actually report total sales and make deductions for returns and allowances. Either cm ratio formula way, this number will be reported at the top of the income statement. The concept of this equation relies on the difference between fixed and variable costs.

• As a result, the contribution margin for each product sold is \$60, or a total for all units of \$3 million, with a contribution margin ratio of .60 or 60%.
• E.g., if a firm sells a product at Rs 10 per piece and incurs variable costs per unit of Rs 7, the unit contribution margin will be Rs 3 (10 – 7).
• The deionized water (18.2 MΩ cm−1) used for the feedstocks solution and aqueous electrolytes preparation were made with a Milli-Q EQ 7000 Ultrapure water purification system.
• The first step to calculate the contribution margin is to determine the net sales of your business.
• Iverson had \$660,000 of fixed expenses during the period, resulting in a loss of \$60,000.
• So, it is an important financial ratio to examine the effectiveness of your business operations.
• In the experimental cycle, samples of local ore (Supplementary Figs. 4–9) obtained by an exploratory robot are sent to the laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) facility for elemental analysis (Supplementary Fig. 10).