Research Theme - Nanoscience
Nanoscience involves the study of phenomena and manipulation of matter on a nanometre scale and development of a wide range of tools, objects, structures, devices, systems and techniques of nanotechnologies. This is a fast-moving area of research and development. It is widely predicted that the nanotechnologies will become a central focus for driving economic growth in the 21st century. They are attracting rapidly increasing investments from governments and from businesses in many parts of the world. The aim of the current UK Strategy for nanotechnologies is to describe the actions necessary to ensure that the UK
obtains maximum economic, environmental and societal benefit from nanotechnologies while keeping the risks properly managed (EPSRC).
Researchers within the Nanoscience and Nanoengineering (NNG) theme at Cardiff School of Engineering have recognised strengths in key areas of Nanoscience. They have been working to develop theoretical, experimental and technological innovations in the field as well as novel measurement techniques. For example, the group is pioneering new analytical methods for extracting elastic and adhesive properties of materials based on inverse problems for depth-sensing indentation of spherical probes. A multidisciplinary team including Civil, Mechanical, and Electrical Engineers, working with Physicists, Mathematicians and others, seek appropriate models, approaches and solutions for numerous problems at the nanoscale where adhesive and surface effects become dominant and where properties of matter differ significantly from those at the macroscale. The NNG team is involved not only in pure and applied research but also in teaching, e.g. the course ‘Fundamentals of Nanomechanics’ is currently unique in Europe.
The group research can be described under four main themes:
Nanomechanics and bio-mimetics (Professor Feodor M. Borodich);
Nanomaterials and nanostructures (Professor Bhushan Karihaloo);
Electrical and magnetic properties of nanostructures (Prof Adrian Porch; Dr John E Snyder, Dr R Perks);
Microfluidic technologies (Professor David Barrow)