Posted in | Nanomaterials | Nanobusiness

Conference Highlights Advances in Nanotechnology

Published on June 18, 2008 at 9:36 PM

Organizers of nanotxUSA, the international nanotechnology event held each year in Dallas, Texas, confirmed today that Rice University in Houston is the latest addition to this important conference/expo. Rice University will showcase its Consortium for Nanomaterials for Aerospace Commerce and Technology (CONTACT) program, a special feature of the R. E. Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology there. Details of the program will be broadcast on the ScienceNews Radio Network and later archived for world consumption at the network’s web site and linked from nanotxUSA.

Rice is only the latest addition to a gold-bond roster of outstanding schools of higher learning with programs specializing in the fields of nanotechnology. First being the University of Texas at Dallas where Dr. Ray Baughman leads the highly renowned Nanotech Institute. Dr. Baughman was a guest on the ScienceNews Radio Network April 19 and can now be heard archived at www.nanotxUSA.com. Other very important schools at the conference/expo include University of Texas, Austin, including both The office of Technology Commercialization and the MSTC, where Gary M. Cadenhead, Director of the program, IC2, will explore incubators, how Austin and the university partners with vendors to grow new commercial enterprises. This program was previewed May 11 on the ScienceNews Radio Network and also can be heard at the archives.

Other schools with dynamic nanotechnology programs that are part of this expo include: Texas State technical college: Texas State University at San Marcos, and Austin community College; historically other advanced schools included such big names as Baylor University; Campus Monterrey, Mexico; Ohio University, University of Houston, University of Oklahoma, University of South Carolina, University of Texas health Science Center, University of Minnesota; Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, University of North Texas, Lamar University, Louisiana Tech University, Texas A&M, Tuskegee University, etc. Interested parties should check regularly at the web site as new schools are added weekly.

The conference at nanotxUSA during International Nanotechnology Week, as in years past, again features speakers who are giants in the field. This year is no exception as Eric Drexler, world-famous futurist and the man whom Wired Magazine said first coined the word, nanotechnology, will be a leading attraction among other top minds in science.

Drexler will present his latest insights the second day of the event, Friday, October 3, when he speaks to a crowd of nanotech business interests.

As a researcher and author, Drexler’s work focuses on advanced nanotechnologies and directions for current research. His 1981 paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences established fundamental principles of molecular design, protein engineering, and productive nanosystems.

Much of what Drexler saw coming is being realized today; indeed he worked to create it. This field has been his basis for numerous journal articles and books, including Engines of Creation: The Coming Era of Nanotechnology (written for a general audience) and Nanosystems: Molecular Machinery, Manufacturing, and Computation (a quantitative, physics-based analysis). And Drexler helped lead development of the 2007 Technology Roadmap for Productive Nanosystems, a project managed by Battelle and hosted by several of the U.S. National Laboratories.

Other top minds at this year’s conference include people like Stan Ovshinsky, world-famed pioneer in nanostructures, who was once named Time Magazine’s “Hero of the Planet.” Ovshinsky has become a living legend in the scientific and business communities, having once been profiled in a one-hour PBS program on NOVA entitled “Japan’s American Genius.” The most recent exciting advancement is his solid hydrogen storage system, a metal hydride solid which can be stored in a granular, inert form in compact tanks.

Also speaking is scientist/businessman William Kroll, chairman of Matheson Tri-Gas and who served on the Commission of Outsourcing and Off-shoring for the governor of New Jersey; Mark Hakey, Manager of IBM's Process Integration team at Albany Nanotech; Prof. Mauricio Terrones IPICyT (Mexico) Leader, National Laboratory for Nanoscience Research; Dr. Zvi Yaniv and Dr. Richard Fink of Applied Nanotech; Dr. David Johnson, US Army R&D Center; and Dr. Ray Baughman, Director of the Nanotech Institute at UTD. Many other top names can be seen at www.nanotxUSA.com, where special rates for early-bird registration are offered, but will expire June 30.

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