NanoBusiness Alliance, the top nanotechnology industry organization, has chosen engineering professor and NanoMech, Inc. founder Ajay Malshe as one of the 10 most influential nanotechnology leaders of 2010.
The designation, announced recently by Vincent Caprio, NanoBusiness Alliance executive director, affirms the University of Arkansas as a national leader in nanotechnology research and development.
“Ajay Malshe has been a leader on campus and for the state of Arkansas,” said Sharon Gaber, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs. “The University of Arkansas has a nationally recognized Institute for Nanoscience and Engineering, which has worked diligently to create start-up companies to help promote economic development to enhance the state.”
“There is no greater compliment to a research university than to have its professors recognized by industry experts,” said James Rankin, vice provost for research and economic development. “Dr. Malshe exemplifies the University of Arkansas’ focus on innovation and commitment to educating our next generation of engineers and scientists.”
For more than a decade, Malshe has directed multidisciplinary research projects in nano-materials and manufacturing, micro- and nano-device packaging and integration and surface engineering for advanced manufacturing. Results from these projects have contributed to innovations in areas such as automotive machining, energy saving and lubrication, telecommunications, functional coatings and homeland security.
Malshe’s breakthrough research in nano-materials and manufacturing includes coating of nanoparticles, the first cubic boron nitride coating for machine tools, advanced nano-engineered lubricants, and novel nano-electro-machining that has contributed to innovations in teaching and research and has helped U.S. manufacturers produce superior devices and parts. In addition to creating jobs in Arkansas, the latter contribution has helped manufacturers remain globally competitive by increasing industrial efficiency.
“This is a well-deserved honor for Ajay,” said Jim Phillips, chairman and chief executive officer of NanoMech. “His ground-breaking research, combined with a vision for its commercial application, laid the foundation for NanoMech, one of the industry’s most innovative nano-particle designers and manufacturers. His contributions will help our country reduce energy use, increase manufacturing productivity and build lighter and stronger materials for our military and law enforcement personnel.”
In 2002, Malshe founded NanoMech Inc., a nano-materials and manufacturing technology company started as a result of his nano-particles coating and nano-manufacturing research. Today he serves as chief technology officer and executive vice-president for the Arkansas company, which employs more than 20 people at its factory and laboratories in Springdale and headquarters at the Enterprise Center in the Arkansas Research and Technology Park in Fayetteville. NanoMech focuses product development in four sectors – advanced machining (TuffTek®) and multicomponent Lubrication (NanoGlide™), sustainable retail packaging (nGuard), functional nano powders and biomedicine, and defense. TuffTek is an extreme wear-resistant coating that increases safety and performance of tools. NanoGlide is an advanced lubricant designed through nano-engineered formulations. nGuard was developed as a means to commercialize NanoMech’s nanoparticles additive that extends the shelf life of polymers.
Malshe is a founding member of the university’s Institute for Nanoscience and Engineering. He is director of the university’s Materials and Manufacturing Research Laboratories. In addition to his position as professor of mechanical engineering, he is an adjunct faculty member in the microelectronics/photonics graduate program. Malshe is the Twenty-First Century Professor of Materials, Manufacturing and Integrated Systems.