UCL joins forces with Japan for major nanotechnology push

8 October 2008

As part of a unique collaborative agreement, a UCL partner project has joined forces with the Japanese government to provide a major new nanoscience research centre.

Based at The Nanoscience Centre at Cambridge University, the project is one of just four satellites of the International Center for Materials Nanoarchitectonics (MANA) based outside of Japan, with the others in America and France. The ten-year, £75m programme is aimed at designing new materials, with a special focus on sustainable development.

The surface of polycrystalline diamond grown at LCN

The UCL/Cambridge University tie-up, like the others, is expected to become a world-class research centre, drawing together the expertise of domestic scientists and their counterparts from the Japanese National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS).

The Cambridge University satellite will be led jointly by Dr David Bowler (London Centre for Nanotechnology/ UCL Physics & Astronomy) and Professor Mark Welland, who heads the Nanoscience Group in the Electrical Engineering Division of Cambridge’s Engineering Department.

Dr David Bowler said: “Both groups involved in the satellite have longstanding links with NIMS and this project will considerably strengthen them.

Dr David Bowler

“It also builds on the strong links between UCL and Cambridge which were established by the IRC in Nanotechnology. 

“The close collaborations between experiment and theory, between UCL and Cambridge and between the UK and Japan promise to offer exciting opportunities for new research.”

Professor Masakazu Aono, Director-General, MANA, NIMS, Tsukuba, added: “It is critical to the success of this ten-year project that we have leading international partners.

"Professor Welland’s group at Cambridge and Dr Bowler’s group at UCL will significantly enhance our work in the area of nanomaterials for a sustainable environment.”

For more information on MANA, London Centre for Nanotechnology and UCL Physics & Astronomy click on the links above.

Images show a close up of the surface of a polycrstalline diamond grown at UCL London Centre for Nanotechology (picture by Professor Richard Jackman) and Dr David Bowler.