Materials Research News
ICONN 2016 in Canberra
Another successful International Conference on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICONN 2016) hosted by the Australian Nanotechnology Network was held in Canberra in February 2016. ICONN2016 attracted six hundred delegates from nineteen countries and was chaired by Professors Chennupati Jagadish and Hoe Tan from the Australian National University.
A short course on 'Introduction to Nanofabrication Technologies' was held on the first day which was organised by and featured speakers from the Australian National Fabrication Facility , a major Australian infrastructure network that services the Australian research community.
8 Plenary speakers including Nobel Laureate W E Moerner and thirty six invited speakers gave outstanding presentations that provided a broad synopsis of recent developments in the field. The conference was organised into a plenary session each morning followed by 8 parallel symposia covering: Nanomaterials; Nanobiotechnology; Nanoelectronics; Nanophotonics; Computational Nanotechnology; Nanocharacterisation; Nanotechnology for Energy and Environment; and Commercialisation, Safety and Societal Issues of Nanotechnology. Poster sessions were held on two evenings of the conference with poster prizes eagerly sought after.
ANU Professor C Jagadish Australia Day honours
Distinguished ANU Professor C Jagadish was awarded a Companion on the General Division of the Order of Australia (AC) in the 2016 Australia Day Honours for eminent service to physics and engineering, to education as a leading academic, researcher, author and mentor and through executive roles with national and international scientific advisory institutions. This is the highest civilian honour in the country and it is rare that a scientist receives such an accolade. Professor Jagadish said he was humbled, honoured and grateful for this honour. "This is a wonderful recognition for 25 plus years of work with my research group at the ANU," said Professor Jagadish, who is a world leader in the field of experimental semiconductor nanostructures for optoelectronics. Such an award is not given solely for outstanding scientific achievement but for exceptional contributions to the profession (globally and nationally) and for enriching Australian society.
Jagadish's passion for science has extended well beyond personal scientific achievement to an unselfish commitment to providing scientific opportunity for others. For example, he drew on his own experiences to assist the less privileged to study by funding efforts to replace kerosene lamps that affect disadvantaged children across the globe and also by the establishment of an endowment at ANU to assist disadvantaged foreign students to study at the institution. As Vice President of the Australian Academy of Science he has strongly supported the Academy's primary and high school science education programs and championed the establishment of an early to mid-career researcher Forum within the Academy to give young scientists a real voice in chartering the future directions in science and science policy. He established the Australian Nanotechnology Network (ANN) and the ICONN series of conferences in Australia with the prime aim of supporting young scientists and research students in their career development. He was the Australian champion for the establishment of an Australia-India research collaboration fund, generously supported by both governments. Furthermore, he has been enormously supportive of his colleagues in nominating them (successfully) for scientific awards and honours. Indeed, he has worked tirelessly to achieve his compassionate goals of supporting others through his elected executive positions in a very large number of professional societies and journal editorships across the globe.
Materials for the 21st century: from design to application
The development of new materials to meet the challenges of the 21st century was the focus of this year's Theo Murphy Frontiers of Science conference. Materials for the 21st century: from design to application was held from 9-11 December in Melbourne. This latest in the Frontiers of Science series, brought together the best young Australian materials scientists from across the country. The Theo Murphy events aim to be multi-disciplinary; this year's symposium included topics such as new techniques and materials to improve drug delivery, energy and food production, and ways to develop the next generation of flexible electronics.
The workshop was organised and run by a committee of young researchers and attended by around 70 research students and early to mid-career researchers. It was found to be an excellent networking environment, with many participants identifying new collaboration partners. As one delegate observed: 'With such a broad range of topics it was great to see where the key focuses are for these industries and who is leading the fields. Networking with these people will help as my career evolves'. A special session examined the challenges for women in materials science and was followed by a lively discussion.