CNF is one of 14 members of the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network
(NNIN) of user facilities for nanofabrication. The American Recovery and Reinvestment
Act (ARRA) has allocated $10 million to NNIN to spread over the 14 sites for
various needs. CNF's portion is an add-on to its regular National Science Foundation
grant of $2.68 million per year.
"Replacing old equipment is always a real challenge, and it's not something
that people get excited about," said Sandip Tiwari, director of NNIN and
Cornell's Charles Mellowes Professor in Engineering.
The grant will cover:
* $850,000 for an advanced high-resolution pattern generator;
* $270,000 for a contact mask and bond aligner;
* $44,000 for expanded range film thickness measurement system;
* $85,000 for an ion implanter computer upgrade; and
* $127,000 for an atomic force microscope.
Tiwari noted that while economic times have challenged every aspect of the
university, CNF has done a good job living within its means. He added that CNF
maintains $74 million to $100 million worth of equipment. Even if the estimated
life span for each piece is 10 years, it is still a sizeable sum to replace
each year. The center has reached out to industry partners in the past to help
them supplement equipment at CNF.
"The ARRA support will make things good for a longer period of time,"
Tiwari said. "It is just a perfect thing for use within NNIN."
To date, Cornell has received 121 ARRA awards, totaling more than $99.6 million
over two years.