A mushroom zoomed in on and seen from a microscope slide.

Center for High-rate Nanomanufacturing (CHN)
Toxics Use Reductions Institute (TURI) 

Center for High-rate Nanomanufacturing (CHN)
The Center for High-rate Nanomanufacturing is an NSF-funded Nanotechnology Science and Engineering Center (NSEC). CHN is a partnership between four universities: the University of Massachusetts Lowell, Northeastern University, the University of New Hampshire, and Michigan State University. CHN is focused on developing tools and processes that will enable high-rate/high-volume bottom-up, precise, parallel assembly of nanoelements (such as carbon nanotubes, nanoparticles, etc.) and polymer nanostructures. 
The center nanotemplates are utilized to conduct fast massive directed assembly of nanoscale elements by controlling the forces required to assemble, detach, and transfer nanoelements at high rates and over large areas. The developed nanotemplates and tools will accelerate the creation of highly anticipated commercial products and will enable the creation of an entirely new generation of applications.
CHN is unique among the funded NSECs in that, from the beginning, it has focused on the societal impacts of its activities. Included in the societal impact activities has been a strong focus on the occupational and environmental health and safety impacts of its activities. The Center's EHS program, led by Drs. Tsai and Ellenbecker, has two primary foci:

  • Ensure that all CHN laboratories are working in a manner that protects the health and safety of the staff and students. This is done by training all researchers in good work practices, using sophisticated instrumentation to evaluate possible nanoparticle exposures, and, where significant exposures are found, instituting control measures to reduce exposures to acceptable levels. 
  • Basic research on methods to evaluate and control exposures to engineered nanoparticles. We have made considerable inroads in this important field; for a summary of our results to date, see Research.

This center is supported by the National Science Foundation Award #EEC-0425826.

Toxics Use Reduction Institute (TURI)

The Institute is located at the University of Massachusetts Lowell and is funded by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as part of the state toxics use reduction program, which has the mission of reducing toxic chemical use by companies in the commonwealth. TURI provides services and grant programs to reduce toxic chemical use and advance energy and water efficiency while enhancing the economic competitiveness of local businesses.