Singapore's A*STAR's Institute of Material Research and Engineering (IMRE) and its partners yesterday launched a new Nanoimprint Foundry to bridge the gap between laboratory-based nanotechnologies and real-world products.
The Foundry will develop, test-bed and prototype specially engineered plastics and surfaces to commercialise the nanoimprinting technology. Real-world products that the nanoimprinting technology is capable of producing include adhesives that leave no sticky residue, 'skins' that keep medical instruments germ-free, new anti-reflective protectors for displays, or surfaces that prevent barnacles from attaching to ships.
Dr Karen Chong, the IMRE scientist heading the Foundry, said: "The Foundry will help companies develop samples for proof-of-concept and pilot production [of the products produced by nanoimprinting technology]. This allows manufacturers to shorten the product cycle without the heavy capital R&D investment."
Partners of the Foundry include Toshiba Machines Co Ltd, EV Group, NTT Advanced Technology Corporation, NIL Technology ApS, Kyodo International Inc., micro resist technology GmbH, Nanoveu Pte Ltd and Solves Innovative Technology Pte Ltd.
The Foundry is part of a masterplan spearheaded by A*STAR to push translational research and accelerate commercialisation of home-grown technologies. Thus, it will work closely with Singapore's Economic Development Board (EDB) and SPRING to promote its nanoimprint applications to the industry as part of the plans to build up Singapore's high-value manufacturing capabilities.
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