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Purdue nanotech network gets $18 million grant


A Purdue University-based system that allows nanotechnology researchers to use complex computer simulations online has received a five-year, $18.25 million grant from the National Science Foundation.

The grant went to Purdue’s Network for Computational Nanotechnology to support the U.S. National Nanotechnology Initiative. The national network was launched in 2002 with $10.5 million from the science foundation.

The project is based in Purdue’s Discovery Park and includes partners at the University of California at Berkeley, the Molecular Foundry at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Norfolk State University, Northwestern University and the University of Texas at El Paso.

“This additional funding will help us expand these sophisticated computational tools to researchers, educators and even industry,” said network director Mark Lundstrom, a Purdue professor.

The network’s heart is the nanoHUB, a free, Internet-based site used by more than 3,000 national and international researchers and educators each month. Users can use sophisticated simulations that describe nearly atomic-scale building blocks of nanodevices. They also can access courses, seminars, tutorials, discussions and other resources.

“The nanoHUB has proven to be an extremely valuable tool for education and research,” said H.S. Philip Wong, a professor of electrical engineering at Stanford University.

The site gives scientists access to resources that they would otherwise have to install and on their personal computers, said Gerhard Klimeck, a Purdue professor of electrical and computing engineering who leads the nanoHUB project.

–Associated Press

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