Funding To Support Nano Cluster Devices’ Research
15 December 2004
$1 Million In Funding To Support Nano Cluster Devices’ Research
One million dollars in government research funding has been granted to Christchurch-based high-tech firm Nano Cluster Devices (NCD). “This is another big step forward in the development of Nano Cluster Device’s technology. This funding will allow important new work on the characterisation of our nanowire-based devices,” said Dr Simon Brown, NCD’s Executive Director of Science and Technology. Nano Cluster Devices is working to commercialise its world-class research in nanotechnology. The company has developed innovative techniques to make nanowires – tiny electrical wires – that can be used in products and devices up to 100,000 times smaller than the diameter of a human hair.
“The NCD techniques, which use nano cluster deposition, are radically different from how other researchers around the world are making nanowires. The more we can understand about the behaviour of the nanowires and devices we are working with, the better we will be able to lead the commercialisation of this very promising technology,” says Dr Brown.
Nano Cluster Devices has already attracted overseas interest, and announced recently that a joint venture company had been formed in the United States in partnership with Buffalo-based Nanodynamics, aimed at commercialising the NCD technology. Dr Brown will oversee the new research at the University of Canterbury. The programme will investigate the basic properties of NCD’s innovative electronic devices. The NCD research funding is through a subcontract from Industrial Research Ltd, which holds the main contract with the Foundation for Research Science and Technology. NCD chairman John Walley said that the FoRST subcontract was an important further step in developing Nano Cluster Devices’ business, and should provide significant value to its shareholders.
The research contract
Industrial Research’s main contract with the Foundation for Research Science and Technology is intended to commercialise software for the modelling of materials and devices at different scales. Industrial Research and Nano Cluster Devices have an intellectual property sharing arrangement, which ensures that each of the two organisations own their relevant intellectual property.
Industrial Research will focus on development of software packages but will also provide theoretical support to the Nano Cluster Devices research. The NCD team will provide samples to IRL. Dr Shaun Hendy from IRL – who is a world leading expert in molecular dynamics simulations – has already been working with Dr Brown's group extensively over the past three years, and the team has a proven track record of success with several high-profile publications. Both Dr Hendy and Dr Brown are members of the MacDiarmid Institute for advanced materials and nanotechnology, which is a governmentfunded