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Award Abstract #1542202

NNCI: Midwest Nano Infrastructure Corrider (MINIC)

NSF Org: ECCS
Div Of Electrical, Commun & Cyber Sys
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Initial Amendment Date: September 10, 2015
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Latest Amendment Date: December 15, 2015
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Award Number: 1542202
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Award Instrument: Cooperative Agreement
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Program Manager: Lawrence S. Goldberg
ECCS Div Of Electrical, Commun & Cyber Sys
ENG Directorate For Engineering
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Start Date: September 15, 2015
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End Date: August 31, 2020 (Estimated)
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Awarded Amount to Date: $900,000.00
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Investigator(s): Stephen Campbell campb001@umn.edu (Principal Investigator)
Aaron Reinholz (Co-Principal Investigator)
Steven Koester (Co-Principal Investigator)
Syed Ahmad (Former Co-Principal Investigator)
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Sponsor: University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
200 OAK ST SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455-2070 (612)624-5599
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NSF Program(s): National Nanotechnology Coordi
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Program Reference Code(s): 081E, 083E, 084E
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Program Element Code(s): 7601

ABSTRACT

Recent advances in technology allow the fabrication of very small structures with highly desirable capabilities. This enables new physical and chemical understanding (nanoscience) as well as new structures and devices that are of interest to many industries (nanotechnology). The Midwest Nano Infrastructure Corridor (MINIC) National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure (NNCI) site at the University of Minnesota will accelerate these advances by providing access to leading edge micro and nano fabrication capabilities for the research and development of nanoscience and technology. The MINIC core facilities represent more than $50M in labs and equipment as well as more than 400 man-years of staff expertise. Academic researchers can use these capabilities on an equal basis with University of Minnesota faculty. Students will travel to MINIC facilities to gain valuable hands-on experience. Entrepreneurs will enjoy low-cost access to try new ideas without having to make long-term capital equipment commitments. MINIC will support a broad spectrum of nano R&D, however it will target researchers in two new areas: the application of two-dimensional materials and the use of nano in biology and medicine. By partnering with North Dakota State University, MINIC will also enable the packaging of nano devices. This allows researchers to perform reliability testing and to incorporate these devices into complex electronic systems. MINIC will also reach out to underserved communities to increase their participation in this rapidly growing field. It will also support micro and nano laboratories at smaller schools throughout the Midwest to enable the development of nanotechnology over a broad geographic area.

MINIC will provide support to micro and nano researchers throughout the country. MINIC offers researchers access to multiple clean rooms with a full suite of fabrication equipment including state-of-the-art electron beam lithography, and extensive staff support to enable them to carry out difficult fabrication projects in a timely and cost-effective manner. To better recruit and serve external users, MINIC will add three new process Focus Areas. The first will support the deposition of a broad variety of 2D thin films, beginning with graphene and the transition metal dichalcogenides. Users will be able to build devices on top of their own substrates without the low yield and variability associated with exfoliation. MINIC will also provide new modeling tools to support this area. The second Focus Area will be led by North Dakota State University's Packaging Center, which has long-standing expertise in the area. This will enable researchers in academia and industry to economically package nanoscale devices, including difficult applications such as RF devices, MEMS, power devices, and 3D multichips. MINIC's third Focus Area will support external users working in bio nanotechnology by providing all the facilities and equipment needed to form nanoparticle suspensions, perform sizing and zeta potential measurements, use them to expose cell cultures in a BSL2 environment, and characterize the result with confocal and fluorescence microscopy. MINIC will also develop a novel outreach program to support nano science and technology labs throughout the upper Midwest.

 

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