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Posted: March 27, 2008
Australian nanotechnology facilities strengthen national collaboration
(Nanowerk News) Australian nanotechnology research and development has received a boost with the announcement that Australia's national facilities for nanoscale fabrication and characterisation are to work together closely for the benefit of all Australian researchers.
A memorandum of understanding between the Australian Microscopy and Microanalysis Research Facility (AMMRF), which has its national headquarters at the University of Sydney, and Australian National Fabrication Facility Ltd (ANFF), was signed at the 2008 International Conference on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICONN08), in Melbourne.
Collaboration between the facilities will principally be in the areas of facility management & operation and business development with a view to achieving best practice in all areas of AMMRF an ANNF operation.
"This partnership will capture the obvious synergies between nanoscale fabrication and characterisation capabilities,'' said Professor Simon Ringer CEO and Executive Director of the AMMRF. "The intention of these two facilities to work together will enhance overall national research capability by linking NCRIS investments and providing value to each facility by way of business development and facility management opportunities."
"Nanotechnology will underpin advances right across healthcare, primary industries and manufacturing sectors," said Dr Bob Frater AO, Chair of ANFF Ltd. "These facilities provide researchers with the essential infrastructure to generate leading-edge research outcomes and competitive advantage for Australia."
The AMMRF and ANFF were established in 2007 under the Commonwealth Government's National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy (NCRIS). The facilities are funded by the Australian Government through NCRIS and the State Governments of New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, South Australia, and Western Australia.
The Australian National Fabrication Facility links 7 university-based nodes to provide researchers and industry with access to state-of-the-art fabrication facilities. The capability provided by ANFF enables users to process hard materials (metals, composites and ceramics) and soft materials (polymers and polymer-biological moieties) and transform these into structures that have application in sensors, medical devices, nanophotonics and nanoelectronics.
The AMMRF comprises nodes at the University of Sydney (which also serves as the national headquarters), the University of Queensland, the University of New South Wales, the University of Western Australia, Australian National University, Flinders University, the University of Adelaide, and the University of South Australia. The facility unites microscopy and microanalysis centers at these universities into a single national network of laboratories, unified in terms of both equipment and research expertise. The AMMRF will provide new, state-of-the-art instruments that will be accessible by researchers from Australia on merit basis at nominal rates.