Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center
Science of Nanoscale Systems and their Device Applications
Science of Nanoscale Systems and their Device Applications
Industry & Outreach

Industrial Outreach Program
Nanotechnology & Business Forum
Technology Transfer
International Workshops
Visitor Exchange Programs
Special Workshops
Community Building


Industrial Outreach Program (IOP)

In April 2005, NSEC members participated in the annual meeting of the Industrial Outreach Program (IOP) Workshop sponsored by Harvard's Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences (DEAS). The IOP Workshop is directed by Assoc. Dean Fawwaz Habbal and is aimed at strengthening external collaborations by facilitating mutually beneficial relationships between outside groups and DEAS interdisciplinary research groups. The workshop was on Bioengineering and Medicine: A Confluence of Innovation was heavily subscribed (Fig. 1). With nearly 200 registrants, a video and sound feed to a second room was set up. George Whitesides spoke on physical tools for cell biology and examples of technology transfer to large companies and smaller, startup ventures. Dale Larson from the Biophysics Department based at the Medical School spoke on nanohole array surface plasmon devices and their applications. Robert Westervelt, Chinh Pham (Greenberg Traurig, LLP), Mark Brandt (Maple Fund) and Rick Rogers (Imaging Group, School of Public Health) participated in a roundtable discussion on forging collaborations with industry. Following the roundtable discussion there was a poster session with NSEC postdoctoral fellows and graduate students to allow for more detailed interaction between the NSEC researchers and attendees.

NSEC members also participate regularly in meetings of the Massachusetts Nanotech Exchange Summit. The mission of the Nanotech Exchange is to create partnerships among public companies, state agencies, and academic institutions. They are dedicated to supporting economic development, entrepreneurship and innovation in technology in New England. Ranch Kimball, MA State Secretary of Economic Development, spoke at the May 2005 meeting at the Museum of Science, Boston on the activities to support nanotechnology ongoing in Massachusetts. Greg Schmergel (Nantero), Greg Shelton (Raytheon), and Jim Lynch (Agilent Technologies) spoke about their industrial experiences and Matthew Nordan (Lux Research) gave perspectives on nanotechnology entrepreneurship based on case studies from their extensive field research.

Industrial Outreach Program (IOP) Workshop in April 2005
Figure 1. Industrial Outreach Program (IOP) Workshop: (L) George Whitesides; (C) Rick Rogers, Robert Westervelt, Mark Brandt, and Chinh Pham; and (R) Dale Larson.


NanoTechnology & Business Forum

NanoTechnology & Business Forum meeting at Harvard, March 2005.
Figure 2. NanoTechnology & Business Forum meeting at Harvard, March 2005. (L) Charles Marcus addresses the attendees; (R) Chinh Pham and Rick Rogers talk at the reception.

Westervelt worked with Chinh Pham (Greenberg Taurig, LLP) to initiate the NanoTechnology Business Forum in the Fall of 2004. The NanoTechnology business forum brings together leaders from local business, industry, government and academics for monthly networking meetings. The monthly meetings have rotated to different venues in the Boston area and the March 2005 meeting was held at Harvard (Fig. 2). Charles Marcus spoke about activities ongoing at Harvard in nanoscale science and Mark Brandt (Maple Fund) spoke on Trends and Opportunities in Nanoelectronics. The Nanotech and Business Forum was instrumental in bringing together Rick Rogers (School of Public Health) and Giannoula Klement (Children's Hospital) along with Dale Larson (Biophysics) who have become collaborators in the proposed research in Cluster I through continued discussion in the Spring of 2005.


Technology Transfer

A recent example of extending NSEC research results to technology comes from Ham and Westervelt's work on integrated circuit/microfluidic hybrid systems. Through collaboration with Klement, Rogers and Larson, they are looking to use the optical sensing of biological cells to carry out cell sorting or counting in low-cost applications for potential use in Third World countries, where field work with expensive apparatus is not possible.

Bawendi works closely with Dr. Charles Hotz, Vice President for Research and Development, and other researchers at Quantum Dot Corp. Their research recently led to the release of the Qdot Innovator's Tool Kit (ITK) Quantum Dots. With the Tool Kit the unique properties of the quantum dots can be applied to a wide variety of biological applications. A key feature of these materials is that they can be modified with large number of small molecules and linker groups to optimize the functionality for target applications.

The surface chemistry pioneered in Whitesides laboratory is the basis for the Pharmacomer Technology Platform, a drug development platform, marketed by Surface Logix, a Cambridge-based start up company. Carmichael Roberts, President and co-Founder, was a postdoctoral fellow in the Whitesides group where he learned about the surface chemistry and soft lithography techniques being developed there. Surface Logix has designed, synthesized and tested a series of Pharmacomer libraries, each with a unique set of properties for specific drug applications. With the use of Pharmacomer Technology, Surface Logix is able to quickly improve sub-optimal PK performance in approved drugs and late stage preclinical candidates, creating New Chemical Entities (NCEs) with improved therapeutic efficacy.


International Workshops & Lecture Series

We have co-sponsored three International Workshops. The first was held in Japan on July 10-12, 2003 just prior to the Electronic Properties of Two-Dimensional Systems Conference drew a large audience from the U.S., Europe and Japan. The NSEC supported scholarships for graduate students from the NSEC International Travel program. The second workshop was held on December 15-18, 2003 on Solid State Quantum Information Processing Conference (Amsterdam, the Netherlands). The NSEC again sponsored scholarships for U.S. graduate students to attend the workshop.

Frontiers of Nanoscale Science and Technology (FNST) Workshop at Harvard, October 2004.
Figure 3. Frontiers of Nanoscale Science and Technology (FNST) Workshop at Harvard, October 2004.


Building on this success, we held the third Workshop, Frontiers of Nanoscale Science and Technology, at Harvard in October 25-26, 2004 (Fig. 5). Over 140 participants attended the workshop that included 30 senior investigators and students from Japan and two- dozen researchers from Europe together with other academics and scientists from industry. The topics discussed were: Coherent Electronics, Quantum Information Processing, and Quantum Optoelectronics. Many of the Japanese and European attendees stayed to visit their counterparts at MIT and Harvard for several days following the workshop for more intensive discussions. The group from Japan also stopped at UCSB for a visit on the return home. Delft University of Technology, the Univ. of Tokyo, NTT (Japan) and ERATO contributed more than $35k to support the Workshop through travel and other expenses.

There were also several special visits in 2004 to the NSEC by distinguished lecturers, both domestic and international, to facilitate new interactions. In most cases, the lecturers visited the Center for several days to allow discussion with Center faculty and researchers. Lecturers included Daniel Loss (University of Basel), David Awschalom (UCSB), Boris Altshuler (Princeton), Michael Stopa (ERATO, Japan), Angela Belcher (MIT), Dragomir Davidovic (Georgia Institute of Technology), Alex Rimberg (Rice), Yigal Mier (Ben Gurion University), and Lieven Vandersypan (Delft).

Other International Collaborations

The Center hosted several international groups during the past year (Fig. 4) including delegations from France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Switzerland, and Japan. We also met with Fabio Beltram in February 2005 to follow up to the April 2004 meeting with the Italian Minister of Education, Letizia Moratti, and the Dean of Physical Sciences and DEAS at Harvard, Venkatesh Narayamurti. Profs. Federico Capasso and Robert Westervelt exploring connections between Harvard and National Nanotechnology Laboratory in Italy. We have established research collaborations in microfluidics and nanowire fabrication between NSEC participants and the NNL.

Research collaborations in microfluidics and nanowire fabrication between NSEC participants and the NNL.
Figure 4. (L) Frederico Capasso talks with Dr. Letizia Moratti, Italian Minister of Education, during a lab visit; (C) Robert Westervelt speaks with a French delegation; and (R) members of the NSEC meet with the Israeli Nanotechnology delegation led by Shimon Peres.


Industrial Interactions

NSEC participants have strong ties with industry, both large and small. Table 11.1 lists the companies that currently have active collaborations. Key areas of partnership include high performance computing, high-speed integrated circuits and microfluidic hybrid systems, nanotube and nanowire devices, semiconductor heterostructure materials, sensors for oil and gas exploration, and soft lithography. Workshops that the NSEC sponsors for networking and identifying new opportunities for collaboration are given below as well as examples of technology transfer from NSEC participants. Center members also collaborate with the Semiconductor Research Corporation, through it's Nanoelectronics Research Initiative


Visitor Exchange Programs

The NSEC has a visitor exchange program between Center universities and the national laboratories to share facilities and carry out collaborative research. Visitors Program is managed by our administrative staff member to encourage collaborative research by supporting student travel. Leo Kouwenhoven oversees the student exchange with Delft, which has excellent facilities to make and test nanoscale structures as well as an outstanding graduate program. It is also possible for students to spend a few weeks or months visiting, to learn new skills and conduct research. Hiroyuki Sakaki and Seigo Tarucha look after similar visits with the University of Tokyo (Fig. 5).

Joanna Aizenberg addresses the audience at the Designing Biology Conference.
Figure 5. (L) Dominick Zumbuhl from MIT visiting U. Tokyo; (C) Ania Bleszynski from Harvard visiting Delft; and (R) Floris Zwanenburg and Chris Lodewijk from Delft at Harvard.


There were a number of visits by Center faculty, postdoctoral fellows and graduate students to use facilities and collaborate on research with scientists at other Centers and National Laboratories. Dominick Zumbuhl, for example, had an extended visit at both Delft Technical University and at the University of Tokyo. Zumbuhl completed his Ph.D. thesis with Marcus and now is a postdoctoral fellowship with Kastner illustrating how knowledge is transferred through the training of talented students within the Center. Ania Bleszynski who studies electron flow with Westervelt visited Delft Technical University to learn about the fabrication of nanowire systems there. Floris Zwanenburg and Chris Lodewijk from Kouwenhoven's group visited Harvard to work with researchers measuring transport properties in quantum dot systems.


Special Workshops

In May 2005, the NSEC co-sponsored a conference on Designing Biology at the Radcliffe Institute (Fig. 6). Westervelt and Whitesides served on the organizing committee that featured Joanna Aizenberg, Linda Buck, Angela Belcher, Vicki Colvin, Drew Endy, and Ellen Williams. The conference drew over 300 to the daylong program of talks, poster sessions and a panel discussion about bringing these research results to technology featuring Myra Hart and William Sahlman from the Harvard Business School; Lita Nelsen from the MIT Licensing Office, and Bryan Roberts from Venrock Associates. The conference attendees included researchers, scholars, students, industry professionals and interested members of the public. More information is found at the Radcliffe Institute.

Joanna Aizenberg addresses the audience at the Designing Biology Conference.
Figure 6. Joanna Aizenberg addresses the audience at the Designing Biology Conference. (C) Robert Westervelt presents the first-place poster award to Willow Deluzio, (R) Joseph Lassiter introduces the panel on developing technology.


Community Building

During the past year, the Center sponsored the Research Exchange seminar (Fig. 7) run by NSEC Postdoctoral Fellows. The seminar was held biweekly on Tuesday at lunchtime during the academic year (2004-05) to encourage NSEC postdoctoral fellows and graduate students to learn about each other's research. The Exchange seminar blossomed into a venue where graduate students could get the advice of the postdoctoral fellows on preparation for oral presentation and then give their talk at the Exchange. On occasion, outside speakers were invited. Speakers and topics have been suggested for next fall and many of the presentations during the past year have been presented in shortened form at professional society meetings.

Robert Westervelt welcomes NSEC postdoctoral fellows and graduate students.
Figure 7. Robert Westervelt welcomes NSEC postdoctoral fellows and graduate students to the Research Exchange seminar, 2004-05.

In the Spring of 2005, the NSEC sponsored the course AP298r: Interdisciplinary Chemistry, Engineering, and Physics, which covered fundamental concepts in nanoscale research as well as possible applications in a series of lectures by twenty NSEC faculty members (Fig. 2). Topics for the course were organized in six sections: NanoBio and Microfluidics, Nanoparticles and Nanowires, Nanofabrication and Electron Microscopy, Nano-optics, Imaging Electrons, and Coherent Electronics. A paper and oral presentation on one of the topics was required. Twenty-five students took the course for credit and another fifteen researchers and staff members regularly attended the class as auditors. The lectures are available on the NSEC website.

Xiaowei Zhuang gives her AP298r lecture.
Figure 8. Xiaowei Zhuang gives her AP298r lecture.

Research from the NSEC also has been woven into undergraduate courses. The new engineering course, ES 122 Cellular Engineering course, taught by Parker this past spring was a laboratory course designed to give students a cutting edge research experience and one selection was taken from NSEC-related work. The undergraduate class was broken down into research teams with a graduate student as the team leader. There was one lecture a week (1.5 hrs) and one lab demonstration. Then the students had 10-20 hours of laboratory access a week to work towards defined milestones. In the laboratory, the students learned cell tissue culture, cell motility assays, light, fluorescent, and video microscopy, immunohistochemistry, and microcontact printing. They met milestones with written and oral reports, were held to high standards in that they kept a detailed and graded lab notebook. The final project presentation incorporated all they have learned, plus other techniques that they taught each other. It was the intent of the class to present the final projects as posters at the Biomedical Engineering Society meeting (BMES) this fall.



  Last Modified October 28, 2009 by the NSEC Office.