Nanoscience future: Australian Institute for Nanoscience building work launched by Senator Kim Carr
24 July 2013
Senator The Hon Kim Carr, federal Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research and Minister for Higher Education, today launched building work on the site for the new Australian Institute for Nanoscience at the University of Sydney.
"The Australian Institute for Nanoscience will be a world-leading research and teaching facility designed to meet the demanding requirements of nanoscience research in the decades to come," said Professor Tim Bedding, Head of the School of Physics at the University.
"The Institute will house a state-of-the-art national nanofabrication facility and will be at the forefront of nanoscience facilities in the world, with many elements of the building being specifically designed to enable high-precision nanoscience research."
"This building will help underpin future jobs growth in this country by being an important part of Australia's transformation into a knowledge-based economy," Senator Carr said.
"Nanoscience is an element in building our future prosperity. Nanophotonics is already a strength for Australia, and AIN will increase our capability and build on our successes in quantum computing, memory devices and photovoltaic cells.
"Nanotechnology is a transformative force for manufacturing and is predicted to be worth $US3 trillion globally by 2020. Australia needs to stake a claim to our slice of that pie now, by building well-researched prototypes for the market. AIN will help make that happen and keep Australian research internationally competitive."
University of Sydney Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Dr Michael Spence said, "The Institute's specialist nanoscience equipment and laboratories will be made available to researchers across Australia, benefitting all scientists and providing a boost to national nanoscience research. Research and teaching in areas as diverse as optics, photonics, quantum computing, materials science, medicine and astronomical instrumentation, will be conducted at the Institute."
Dr Spence said nanoscience has broad-ranging potential to change people's lives.
"Nanoscience has vast applications ranging from medicines fighting disease at the molecular level to the next generation of optics-based IT technologies that will transform communication systems."
In early 2010 the University was awarded $40 million towards the construction of the $110 million building for the Australian Institute for Nanoscience from the federal government's Education Investment Fund. The Institute has been made possible through co-investment from the University of Sydney.
"It's very exciting to see the building work begin. We've been planning the Institute for many years and it's fantastic to see the hard work of so many staff at the University come to fruition," said Professor Bedding.
Located at the University of Sydney as part of the School of Physics, the Institute is expected to be ready for researchers and students in the middle of 2015.
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