- Education & Outreach
National Nanomanufacturing Network
Public surveys are an extremely useful tool in assessing stakeholder opinions, needs, and feedback regarding targeted topics. The National Center for Manufacturing Sciences (http://www.ncms.org) (NCMS (http://www.ncms.org)) has partnered with the National Science Foundation (http://www.nsf.gov) under the auspices of the National Nanotechnology Initiative (http://www.nano.gov) (NNI) to conduct its latest study of commercialization trends in nanotechnology and nanofabrication. The goal of the 2014 survey is to document best practices in nanomanufacturing, i.e; nano-product development and integration, and subsequently identify the challenges stakeholders (academia, government labs, start-ups or established corporations) face in transitioning advances in nanotechnology from the laboratory to sustainable commercial applications of nano-enabled products.
Soiling -- the accumulation of dust and sand -- on solar power reflectors and photovoltaic cells is one of the main efficiency drags for solar power plants, capable of reducing reflectivity up to 50 percent in 14 days. Though plants can perform manual cleaning and brushing with deionized water and detergent, this labor-intensive routine significantly raises operating and maintenance costs (O&M), which is reflected in the cost of solar energy for consumers. Under the sponsorship of the Department of Energys Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy SunShot Concentrating Solar Power Program, Oak Ridge National Laboratory is developing a low-cost, transparent, anti-soiling (or self-cleaning) coating for solar reflectors to optimize energy efficiency while lowering O&M costs and avoiding negative environmental impacts.
Pixelligent Technologies, manufacturer of PixClear and leading producer of advanced high index materials for demanding applications in the solid-state lighting, flat panel display, and optical components and films markets, announced today that it has been awarded a Small Business Innovation Research (http://science.energy.gov/sbir/) (SBIR) Phase I grant by the Department of Energy (http://science.energy.gov) (DOE). The nine-month, $150,000 program will enable Pixelligent to accelerate the development of its proprietary nanocrystal dispersions for use in OLED lighting. As part of this program, Pixelligent will partner with OLEDWorks LLC (http://www.oledworks.com/), a leading OLED lighting company.
Those of you familiar with electronics will know that three of the most read roadmaps are the ITRS (http://www.itrs.net/) (International Roadmap for Semiconductors (http://www.itrs.net/)) roadmap, from the perspective of the semiconductor industry; the iNEMI (http://www.inemi.org) (International Electronics Manufacturing Initiative (http://www.inemi.org)) roadmap, bringing together the value chain from OEMs to material and equipment suppliers; and the IPC (http://www.ipc.org) (Association Connecting Electronic Industries (http://www.ipc.org)) roadmap, focused on package and board assembly and fabrication. iNEMI publishes their Research Priorities every other year after the roadmap has been analyzed and the iNEMI 2013 Research Priorities are accessible at iNEMI.org (http://www.iNEMI.org). These Priorities represent the longer-term research needs identified by the 650 participants, 375 organizations and 18 countries represented. How do nanomaterials and nanostructures figure in the current Research Priorities? In 2008 five years ago the number of internet-connected devices exceeded the number of people on earth (http://share.cisco.com/internet-of-things.html). The internet of things and cloud computing are dramatically altering the landscape of electronics from communications to transportation to medicine. The better-smaller-faster-cheaper and thinner handheld devices we need require new materials sets and designs.
New Factory Creates Robust Technology Industrial Presence in Arkansas Springdale, Ark. (January 15, 2014) Today NanoMech announced it has purchased its existing factory and will build an adjoining state-of-the-art facility in east Springdale. The approximate 25,000 square foot building will triple the size of current operations and will serve as the companys world headquarters. NanoMech is a global nanomanufacturing company founded right here in Northwest Arkansas, said NanoMech CEO Jim Phillips. The new factory and expanded headquarters will provide for approximately 25-50 new jobs for world-class scientists and support staff. The space will also allow us to meet current demand for our products while advancing ongoing research and development efforts. This state-of-the-art, smart manufacturing facility and laboratories will further position our products and scientists as some of the best and most innovative in the world.
Nanocomp Technologies, Inc., a developer of performance materials and products composed of its unique carbon nanotubes (CNTs), today announced it has been awarded $18.5 million in additional funding under the Defense Production Act Title III program ("DPA Title III") to supply CNT yarn, sheet, tape, and slurry materials for the program needs of the Department of Defense, as well as for commercial industrial markets. The mission of the DPA Title III Program is to create assured and affordable production of products that have been identified as essential for national defense, but where U.S. industry has not demonstrated an ability to deliver due to market conditions or other fiscal barriers. By means of a Presidential Determination, Nanocomp's CNT materials were identified to satisfy this critical gap. Initial funding of $2.2 M was provided by DPA Title III in 2011, along with substantial Company investments, enabling Nanocomp to construct a 30,000 square foot Pilot Plant, the nation's largest, and relocate its headquarters to Merrimack, NH.
Tera-Barrier Films (TBF) Pte Ltd, a spin-off company from A*STARs Institute of Materials Research and Engineerings (IMRE), has invented a new plastic film using a revolutionary nano-inspired process that makes the material thinner but as effective as aluminium foil in keeping air and moisture at bay. The stretchable plastic could be an alternative for prolonging shelf-life of pharmaceuticals, food and electronics, bridging the gap of aluminium foil and transparent oxide films.