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Bangalore poised to become ‘nano city’

Staff Reporter

Institute of Nano Science and Technology to come up in the city soon


15 acres of land allotted for the institute

Award instituted for scientists in nano science


Bangalore: Just months after the proposal for a Nano Park was announced, the Department of Science and Technology (DST) of the Centre has made public its plans to establish an Institute of Nano Science and Technology here.

T. Ramasami, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, told presspersons here on Saturday that Rs. 100 crore would be invested in the project for five years under the Nano Science and Technology Mission that had been granted Rs. 1,000 crore by the Centre. With an anticipated 200 researchers, it would be one of the three such institutes in the country – the other two had been planned in Kolkata and in Mohali, Chandigarh.

“The institute in Bangalore will be funded by the Department of Science and Technology and partnered by Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR) and the Indian Institute of Science. The project will be completed in 18 months after permissions are obtained.” The State Government had allotted 15 acres of land off Tumkur Road for the institute, Dr. Ramasami said.

Nano applications

Dr. Ramasami said agriculture, water purifying, healthcare systems and nano-textiles were emerging as important areas for nanotechnology applications in India. “In treating and purifying water for instance, nano-silver can be used as a coat for ceramic filters to eliminate bacteria and viruses. A nanometre, equal to one billionth of a metre will have a sieving system finer than conventional filters. Similarly nano material used on the surface of textiles can create self-cleaning textiles that do not allow water to penetrate,” he said. As part of the Bangalore Nano 2007 conference and exhibition to be organised here on December 6 and 7, a “Research-Industry Collaboration Hub” (RICH) will be held to offer platforms to researchers seeking partnerships with investors, venture capitalists and the industry, said M.N. Vidyashankar, Secretary, Department of IT, Biotechnology and Science and Technology, Karnataka. “If innovations are not backed by capital investments, they will not translate into technology, products and wealth creation for the country. RICH will bring investors and inventors together,” he said. Bangalore, which accounts for a significant proportion of research in nanotechnology in the country, is poised to become “Nano city,” he added.

An annual award would be instituted by the State Government to recognise the achievements of scientists in the field of nano science and technology, Mr. Vidyashankar said. “It will be a national award equal in stature to the most prestigious in the country. It is tentatively called “Nano Ratna,” he said. The selection would be made by a subcommittee of the Nano Advisory Committee and the first award would be presented on December 6, he said.

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