GSA Business – Published Oct. 31, 2013
Clemson University has completed construction of a nanomaterials center designed to support research projects funded by the National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Scientific Research and the Department of Energy. Work has already started at the center in Anderson County.
The nanomaterials center allows scientists and engineers to better conduct research, such as developing high-energy storage and generation devices, superconducting wires and composites and gaining new insights into the nano-bio interface.
Working with the South Carolina Research Authority, the university planned and designed the 5,000-square-foot lab that is outfitted with chemical vapor deposition systems, an electric arc system and advanced spectroscopes and microscopes.
“The research work has already begun with most of the equipment already under extensive use,” said Apparao Rao, director of the center and R.A. Bowen Professor of Physics in Clemson’s physics and astronomy department.
Rao’s work focuses on broadening the frontiers of nanoscience and translating nanotechnology research to energy generation and storage, thermal management and the nanomedicine industry.
The National Science Foundation recently awarded Rao and his collaborators $1.2 million to find ways to scale up production on some of their nanomaterials to make them practical for manufacturing. The goal: energy storage devices that could pump up the power of batteries and capacitors in hybrid and electric vehicles, power tools and other products.
The center is located near the university’s Advanced Materials Research Laboratory, which includes the Electron Microscopy Laboratory and the Center for Optical Materials Science and Engineering Technologies.