Tel Aviv, Northwestern universities set up joint nanotechnology program

Research grants, student exchanges and joint projects will be part of new venture; TAU to build nanoscience center

Shoshanna Solomon is The Times of Israel's Startups and Business reporter

The Student Union and university library at Northwestern University (photo credit: CC BY-SA Amerique, Wikimedia Commons)
The Student Union and university library at Northwestern University (photo credit: CC BY-SA Amerique, Wikimedia Commons)

Researchers and students in the field of nanotechnology will work together on projects and benefit from research grants as part of a new joint venture between Illinois, US-based Northwestern University and Tel Aviv University.

The new partnership will see two researchers from each university getting post-doctoral fellowships supporting two years of research at the partner institution. The fellowships, which cover approximately 75 percent of the total cost of the research, were paid for with funding provided by philanthropist and businessman Roman Abramovich. The respective hosting laboratories will provide for remaining expenses.

The new joint Northwestern-TAU venture also includes a student exchange program, which will allow three graduate students from each institution to study at the partner university.

The new nanotech collaboration will also offer up to two research grants a year to support pilot projects that have a commercial potential. TAU’s Center for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology and Northwestern’s International Institute for Nanotechnology will together select the winning projects, which will get funding to cover the costs involved with completing the proof of concept of the project.

Tel Aviv University is also setting up a new Center for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology building, slated to open in 2020 and aiming to be the leading facility of its kind in the Middle East. The center is being financed through a $30 million donation by Abramovich to the university.

French architect Michel Remon is responsible for the design of the new building, which will span over 75,300 square feet (7,000 square meters) and house core research labs, quantum effects labs, medical nano systems labs and smart biotechnology labs, as well as a prominent visitors center, which will be open to the general public.

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