Australia’s place in the nanotechnology race

CSIRO_CliveD_GloveboxCSIRO researchers are applying nanotechnology to drug delivery, medical body imaging, nerve repair, smart textiles and clothing, medical devices, plastic solar cells (see From plastic money to plastic electricity) and much more.

“Nanotechnology is not an industry—it is an enabling technology,” says Clive Davenport, leader of CSIRO’s Future Manufacturing Flagship.

“Nanotechnology has the potential to contribute new functionality and benefits to almost every product and manufacturing process. It is the product and its respective market that forms the industry.”

“The manufacturing industries that will grow from our inventions are important for Australia,” he says.

The Flagship had its official launch in September 2009 with a four year, $36 million program designed to boost Australia’s manufacturing capabilities.

CSIRO’s nanotechnology research has already led to a number of significant businesses such as: Cap-XX—making supercapacitors for mobile phones; and Ceramic Fuel Cells—producing new ways to generate power where it’s needed.

And a number of Australian companies are making an impact including: Starpharma, MiniFAB, AquaDiagnostic, Sapphicon, bluechiip, Dyesol, iGlass, Antaria, Micronisers, Small Particle Company and Xerocoat.

“Our goal is to improve the future competitiveness of Australian manufacturing, delivering a major impact by 2020,” says Clive.

For more information: CSIRO Future Manufacturing Flagship, Tracey Nicholls, Tel: +61 (3) 9545 2960, Tracey.Nicholls@csiro.au, www.csiro.au/org/FutureManufacturingFlagship.html

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