Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Canterbury student to launch robotic company in Christchurch

Canterbury student to use Silicon Valley internship to launch robotic company in Christchurch

June 15, 2014

A University of Canterbury PhD student has won an intern scholarship to the IBM research centre in the heart of Silicon Valley.

Steven Banerjee has received an IBM funded University of Canterbury BlueFern internship to spend up to six months at the IBM Almaden Research Labs in San Jose, California. It is one of IBM's nine worldwide research labs and has made seminal contributions to computer storage systems and materials science and technology.

The IBM lab is located in the hills above Silicon Valley with close proximity to Stanford University and University of California, Berkeley. It is home to 10 IBM Fellows, 10 IBM distinguished engineers, nine IBM Master Inventors and 17 members of the IBM Academy of Technology.

``One of the researchers I will be working with is Jane Frommer, a pioneer in scanning probe microscopy which started the nanotechnology age in the mid-1980s,’’ Banerjee says.

``IBM Almaden has established different forms of data storage devices including hard-disc drives and flash based memory devices. We use them in our normal daily life. Over the past decade, however, IBM has been investing heavily toward developing a new class of computing storage technology in terms of non-volatile memories such as phase-change devices.

``These memories incorporate a new kind of material known as a mixed ionic-electronic conductor because of their interesting electronic properties. This class of storage devices will be tiny, faster in terms of reading and writing data and consume less power. Imagine living in a world where the storage density of our computers, smart phones and any other electronic devices would be exponentially more powerful compared to devices of today.

``My research will involve looking into the performance of the conductor to look at hands-on tasks such as electrical testing, electronics circuit design, manufacturing in clean-room, automation of data collected from these devices and then analysing them.

``The reason the internship is critical is because it will give me first-hand experience with the intellectual and business culture in the Silicon Valley for a significant period of time. The research infrastructure that I will have access to at IBM is amazing. This will give me new ideas in commercialising and further research into our micro/nano robotic technology that we have been developing as a part of my PhD at the University of Canterbury.

``This visit will help me in my start-up venture in Christchurch when I come back to New Zealand. My plan is to develop the world's first micro/nano robotic desktop-sized factory for manipulating objects that are tens to hundreds of times smaller than a speck of dust.

``I want to create this first-of-its-kind tiny factory that will have applications from drug research and discovery to the 3D printing of molecules. It will have downstream benefits to the New Zealand economy working out of Christchurch with angel investors from Silicon Valley and New Zealand. This would be a win-win scenario not only for New Zealand but also globally,’’ Banerjee says.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: Wheeler Downplays Scope For ‘Large’ Rates Fall

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler says some market commentators are predicting further declines in interest rates that would only make sense for an economy in recession, although some easing is likely to be needed to maintain New Zealand’s economic growth. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha Dam: Consent Conditions Could Mean Reduced Intensity

Legal advice sought by the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council on the Ruataniwha Dam consent conditions has confirmed that farmers who sign up to take water from the dam could be required to reduce the intensity of their farming operation to meet the catchment’s strict nitrogen limit. More>>

Health And Safety: Bill Now Sees Rules Relaxed For Small Businesses

Health and safety law reform sparked by the Pike River coalmine disaster has been reported back from the industrial relations select committee with weakened requirements on small businesses to appoint health and safety representatives and committees. More>>

ALSO:

Bearing Fruit: Annual Fruit Exports Hit $2 Billion For First Time

The value of fruit exported rose 20 percent (up $330 million) for the June 2015 year when compared with the year ended June 2014. Both higher prices and a greater quantity of exports (up 9.0 percent) contributed to the overall rise. More>>

ALSO:

Interest Rates: NZ Dollar Jumps After RBNZ Trims OCR

The New Zealand dollar jumped more than half a US cent after Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler cut the official cash rate by a quarter-point and said the currency needs to be lower, while dropping a reference to criteria that justified intervention. More>>

ALSO:

Drones: New 'World-Class' Framework For UAVs

The rules, which come into effect on 1 August, recognise the changing environment and create a world-class framework that accommodates ongoing development while still ensuring the safety of the public, property and other airspace users. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news