Naval Research Laboratory Establishes Institute for Nanoscience
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The Naval Research Laboratory has established an Institute for Nanoscience to conduct multidisciplinary research at the intersections of the fields of materials, electronics and biology. As part of this effort, this summer NRL will begin construction of a major facility at NRL-DC called the Nanosciences Building.
Prinz, currently a Senior
Scientist in NRL's Materials Science
and Technology Division,
has been appointed as the first
Director for the Institute for
Nanoscience. Dr. Prinz is,
"... excited about the opportunity
interdisciplinary research and the Institute's prospects
revolutionary scientific discovery." In his capacity
the Director for the Institute, Dr. Prinz will report to the
Director of Research. Dr. Prinz will begin by providing technical
oversight of the design of the new Nanoscience Building and
the research equipment needed for the new facility.
to the Institute will begin in October 2001.
"Some of the richest research opportunities will lie in the hybridization of different disciplines... It is clear that NRL is currently well positioned to take a leadership role in the emerging field of nanoscience," says Dr. Timothy Coffey, NRL's Director of Research. "In FY01, NRL has a broad collection of individual efforts in the various divisions directed at specific nanoscience issues. While nanoscience is an interdisciplinary topic, we should proceed in such a way that we do not destroy our centers of scientific and technical discipline that reside in our research divisions. The Institute is not the appropriate venue for the continuing development of in-depth expertise in a particular discipline," says Dr. Coffey.
The Institute is seen as the venue to bring together expertise from different disciplines in order to identify and exploit those cross-disciplinary opportunities which had not been previously accessible. As such, it will host scientists from other institutions for both short-term visits and long-term visits; collaborative interest has already been expressed by leading academic institutions both here and abroad. The Institute will maintain a strong postdoctoral program and provide an active colloquium series.
Since the Institute will begin by combining existing efforts under a new technical management structure, much of the physical facilities will initially reside in the existing Division buildings. However, the new Nanoscience Building, currently scheduled for occupancy in December 2002, will provide a common venuefor the collaborations envisioned in these cross-disciplinary efforts and a critical mass of fabrication, (e-beam writer, dual beam FIB, fine pattern aligner, deposition/etch), manipulation (Omicron nanomanipulator) and characterization (TEM, SEM, AFM, STM) equipment in a clean, low-noise environment.
The building will have approximately
5000 square feet of Class 100 clean room spaces configured in
ballroom style (for easy adaptation to changing needs),
4000 square feet of quiet (low vibration,
acoustic, EMI, ±0.25°C)
laboratory space and
approximately 1000 square feet of ultraquiet
acoustic, EMI, ±0.1°C) laboratory
space. So far as
possible, sources of "noise" will
be relegated into
ample utility corridors sharing a wall with
the lab space.
Lower quality ("higher noise") laboratory
offices, and conference rooms will be available through
corridor connecting into the Chemistry Division Building. The
facilities will be treated as a Laboratory asset and not operated
as a cost-center.
NRL is undertaking an experiment in organizing this major program around the Nanoscience Institute and Building. The structure of this program will itself be an experiment, explains Dr. Coffey. Scientists who are assigned to the Institute for Nanoscience will simultaneously hold permanent positions in their parent division. The title "Fellow of the Institute for Nanoscience" will be conferred as appropriate on select members of the Institute for Nanoscience. In this regard, the Director of the Institute will recommend to the Director of Research individuals who might hold the title "Fellow of the Institute for Nanoscience."
About the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory
The U.S. Naval Research Laboratory is the Navy's full-spectrum corporate laboratory, conducting a broadly based multidisciplinary program of scientific research and advanced technological development. The Laboratory, with a total complement of nearly 2,800 personnel, is located in southwest Washington, D.C., with other major sites at the Stennis Space Center, Miss., and Monterey, Calif. NRL has served the Navy and the nation for over 90 years and continues to meet the complex technological challenges of today's world. For more information, visit the NRL homepage or join the conversation on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.
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