Main Research Themes
The IU Nanoscience Center has two main research themes:
•Nanobiology: Life sciences at the nano/bio interface.
•Energy and the environment.
Indiana University has a commitment to pursue preeminence in the life sciences and the Life Sciences Initiative is expected to transform the state's economy. Nanobiology is a rapidly expanding area of scientific and technological opportunity that applies the tools and processes of nano/microfabrication to build devices for studying biosystems. The ability to organize matter in complex, communicative, non-equilibrium environments, across length scales from atoms to organisms, makes biological systems the ultimate working example of nanotechnology. Nanobiology research projects at IU include investigations to understand biology at the nanometer scale, the development of biologically inspired nanomaterials with novel magnetic, electronic, or optical properties, and the development of theoretical methods and software to explain nanometer scale bio-phenomena.
The recent spike in oil prices highlights the instability in global energy supplies. There are also important environmental issues, like global warming, that are a direct consequence of our dependence on fossil fuels. The depletion of fossil fuels and the environmental consequences of our reliance on them make it increasingly urgent to explore green and renewable energy supplies. Equally important is improving the utilization efficiency of current energy resources. Nanoscale materials have unique and tunable properties that are not present in conventional bulk materials, and they are expected to make a critical contributions to energy resource development and environmental quality.
The IU Nanoscience Center will:
•Be an incubator for collaborative research projects.
•Facilitate applications for large center grants.
•Enable outreach to under-represented minorities and the community at large.
•Promote education through K-12 activities, web courses, and seminars.
•Help provide the scientific infrastructure needed for nanoscience research.
•Provide exposure for nanoscience research at Indiana University.