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NSF Institute on Nano Comes to Campus

Course Discusses Performance of Nanomaterials

Julie Chen

By For more information, contact or 978-934-3224


UMass Lowell will host a National Science Foundation summer institute short course on nanotechnology from June 15 to 18. The institute will bring top researchers in plastics, composites and nanomaterials from around the world together to share their expertise in areas including the structure, behavior and performance of nanomaterials.

Typically hosted by Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., this is the first time the institute will be held on the East Coast. Co-organizers from UMass Lowell are Prof. Julie Chen of Mechanical Engineering and Asst. Prof. Daniel Schmidt of Plastics Engineering.

The four-day NSF Summer Institute on Nanomechanics, Nanomaterials and Micro/Nanomanufacturing will include courses on properties and applications, nanoparticle engineering, nanocomposite formation and characterization and micromechanics, as well as hands-on demonstrations and facilities tours. The program will be of particular interest to industrial engineers, scientists and academics who would like to expand their knowledge of nanomanufacturing techniques, theory and recent developments in this ever-evolving field.

Lecturers at the institute are scheduled to include Alan Lesser (UMass Amherst), Michael Rubner (MIT), Dale Schaefer (University of Cincinnati), Sanford Sternstein (professor emeritus, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute) and Richard Vaia (U.S. Air Force Research Lab). Derk Brouwer, a senior exposure-assessment scientist from the Netherlands, will complement the group with his expertise in nanomaterial-relevant occupational health and safety.

Sponsoring the program at UMass Lowell is the NSF Center for High-rate Nanomanufacturing (CHN) and the Nanomanufacturing Center of Excellence (NCOE). The CHN, one of only four NSF nanomanufacturing centers nationwide, is a partner with Northeastern University and the University of New Hampshire. The NCOE was formed through a 2004 economic stimulus bill funded by the John Adams Innovation Institute and is administered by the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.

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Daniel Schmidt