Milestones

NRC_2143During the last decade we have strengthened our partnerships with key nanotechnology players in Canada and beyond.

We continue to build our reputation as a world-class institution and are proud to support ground-breaking nanotechnology research and advancements across sectors.

Some of our milestones to date include:

  • Improving plastic solar cell performance
  • Pioneering the creation of single atom quantum dots
  • Developing the world’s sharpest man-made object
  • Engineering the world’s first single molecule electrical circuit
  • Attracting world-class talent
  • Collaborating with existing and future industry leaders
  • Opening state-of-the-art research spaces
  • Exploring innovative partnerships
  • Earning external recognition

Improving plastic solar cell performance: Our NINT team has been instrumental in revolutionizing solar energy products.  Led by Dr. Jillian Buriak, researchers from a collection of disciplines successfully engineered a unique approach that not only improves the efficiency of plastic solar panels it makes the important technology more affordable for consumers.

Pioneering the creation of single atom quantum dots: NINT researchers are at the forefront of groundbreaking technology that makes the control of individual electrons possible.  Single atom quantum dots are a significant discovery for global electronics and computer industries, making possible a multitude of new and improved technological devices that will be smaller, faster and more efficient.

Engineering the world’s first single molecule electrical circuit: Our talented team pioneered the world’s first single molecule electrical circuit.  This breakthrough discovery paves the way for computer miniaturization and the development of ultra sensitive devices that can detect single molecule interactions.

Developing the worlds sharpest man-made object: Developed by Dr. Robert Wolkow and his research team, the NINT nanotip tests the limits of quantum mechanics.  This home-grown technology will dramatically reduce the size of computer chips, opening the door for smaller, faster and more efficient devices in the future.

Attracting world-class talent: NINT’s state-of-the-art laboratories and established track record of success continues to be a big draw for globally recognized nanotechnology research leaders.

Collaborating with existing and future industry leaders: A hallmark of our institute is the investment in all aspects of nanotechnology. The establishment of the NINT Innovation Centre in 2005 demonstrates our commitment to working in partnership with industry on leading-edge research and development with the end goal being commercial success.

Opening state-of-the-art research spaces: We recognize the value of working in partnership with industry leaders.  In 2011, NINT collaborated with Hitachi High Technologies and opened the Hitachi Electron Microscopy Product Centre (HEMiC).  The ultra-modern space boasts the latest microscopy research equipment and will further support NINT microscope innovations.

Exploring Innovative Partnerships

Partnering for the Future – Xerox Research Centre Canada (XRCC)

We are currently in the second phase of a $10M multi-year, multi-project formal collaboration with the XEROX Canadian Research Centre (XRCC).

Concentrated on 3 distinct product platforms, each with specific commercialization objectives, this collaboration represents the first time XEROX has experimented with open innovation by partnering with an outside organization on research related to its core technologies.

In addition to the resulting IP (8 patents filed to date), this relationship provides an opportunity for NINT researchers to become familiar with the demands and protocols of industrial research, and to prove the market value of their expertise. For Xerox, this experience is a means to de-risk potential product development opportunities.

Earning External Recognition

Our world-class team continues to earn recognition from academic and industry authorities for their dedication and significant nanotechnology discoveries.

Awards

Royal Society Fellowship

NINT’s very own, Dr. Danial Wayner has a growing list of accolades to his credit.  In 2002, Dr. Wayner was inducted into the Royal Society of Canada as a Fellow in recognition of his invaluable contributions to the nanotechnology field.

Royal Society Chemistry Honour

In 2005, NINT’s Dr. Jillian Buriak was awarded the Royal Society of Canada Rutherford Memorial Medal in Chemistry.  This prestigious honor recognizes Dr. Buriak’s outstanding research achievements and is a testament to the caliber of people who make up our world-class team.

National Research Council (National Research Council) Rising Star Award

In 2011, NINT Research Officer, Dr. Michael Woodside was awarded the National Research Council’s prestigious Rising Star Award. Dr. Woodside uses force as a probe of biological systems, as he studies how single biological molecules fold into functional, three-dimensional structures.

This is one of the most basic questions of modern biology, with implications for understanding the function of biological molecules, the molecular basis of many diseases, and the design of novel biomolecular materials.

The importance of this work is that a number of diseases involve proteins that fold into the wrong shapes, for example, common neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, Jacob-Creutzfeld (mad cow) and Parkinson’s, which affect tens of millions of people worldwide.

Dr. Woodside invented a new, nanotechnology-enabled platform for testing drugs for neurodegenerative diseases which will be assessed in collaboration with ChemRoutes, an Edmonton based company, through the first and largest project approved under Alberta’s nanoWorks program for industry-driven nanotechnology R&D.