Posted: Oct 04, 2010

The brightest young minds in nanotechnology from across Asia gather in Singapore

(Nanowerk News) The Asia Nano Forum's (ANF) 3rd Asia Nanotech Camp at A*STAR's Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE) brings together 40 hand-picked PhD candidates and early career postdoctorates from the Asia-Pacific region to discuss, debate, network and collaborate on their favourite pastimes - nanotechnology, eating and shopping.
Starting today, the next generation of nanotechnology scientists from some 35 universities in 13 countries across the Asia-Pacific region will meet in Singapore and Malaysia over a period of 12 days. Participants of the camp will not only discuss and form collaborations on nanotechnology, but also experience the cultures of their host nations.
Participants will present their research on nanostructured materials and devices, as well as discuss the impact of nanoscience and nanotechnology on society. A substantial part of the programme will also involve participants in activities to discover more about their host nations, research-wise, economically and culturally.
The participants will get to visit Singapore universities, research organisations and local companies which employ nanotechnology research such as Hyflux. They will also participate in a cultural immersion programme which will introduce them to the sights, sounds, diversity, and tastes of Singapore. There is even a short introduction to favourite local foods in the official Camp Handbook.
"Just as important as the discussions and exchange of ideas on research are, the camp is unique as it is designed to allow the participants to learn more about R&D, the economy and the way people live in the host countries", explained Prof Andy Hor, Executive Director of A*STAR's IMRE, whose nanotechnology R&D examples include nanostructured materials, nanocomposites, nanopatterning and nanoimprinting. IMRE is one of the hosts of this year's camp and where ANF is headquartered.
Echoing his sentiments, Dr Lim Khiang Wee, Vice-President of ANF said, "The camp is a networking opportunity for these young researchers. This 'peer support group' will be essential to them in the future when they begin take on their roles as principal drivers of research and innovation in their respective countries".
The camp will host young talented researchers like Dr Davy Cheong from Singapore who is looking to commercialise his new cornstarch-inspired, flexible, lightweight, impact-resistant composite material made for body armour and protective sports padding, and Dr Ratno Nuryadi from Indonesia who built a fully-functional nanoscope from commonly available parts at less than a tenth of SGD400,000 price tag of commercial systems. (Refer to profiles attached.)
"Davy and Ratno are examples of the calibre of the young researchers who are attending the camp. They represent the new ideas, unconventional thinking and can do spirit that we hope this networking will create. Who knows? We could very well have a future Nobel Laureate in our midst!" added Prof Andy Hor.
The annual camp was initiated in Japan two years ago by the Asia Nano Forum (ANF) network, an organisation spanning 15 countries in the Asia-Pacific region, which was founded in 2004 to promote excellence in research, development and the economic uptake of nanotechnology within the Asian region. This is the first time the camp is co-hosted by two nations, Singapore and Malaysia.
Source: A*STAR