A new era in health, construction, communications and computing research

Media releases

Enabled by the Australian Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology opening 20 April 2016 at The University of Sydney

Supporting information

And more at http://sydney.edu.au/nano

The Institute and its people

Australian Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology

AINST is headquartered at the new $150 million Sydney Nanoscience Hub which houses the new facilities including

  • Research laboratories protected from physical, electronic and thermal interference and located next to…
  • A Research and Prototype Foundry and clean room which allows the researchers to create their structures and devices without leaving the building. In the past they’d have had to go overseas to make some of their devices.
  • A Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) Suite which can see the atomic structure of the materials the researchers are creating.
  • Teaching laboratories, lecture theatres and collaborative workspaces that bring students to the heart of the new Institute.


The Institute leadership

The leaders of the Australian Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology are:

  • Professor Thomas Maschmeyer – AINST Director
  • Professor Simon Ringer – Director, Sydney Nanoscience Hub and Research and Prototype Foundry
  • Professor Zdenka Kuncic – Director, Community and Research
Research leadership
  • Five Flagship Projects, ambitious, large-scale programs directly addressing grand societal challenges:
    • Measurement and Control at the Nanoscale, led by Professor David Reilly
    • Quantum Simulation, led by Associate Professor Michael J. Biercuk
    • Nanoscale Photonic Circuits, led by Professor Benjamin Eggleton
    • Energy and Environment Flagship led by Professor Thomas Maschmeyer
    • Health and Medicine Flagship led by Professor Georges Grau and Professor Peter Lay

The Australian Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology (AINST) at the University of Sydney, known as AINST, is headquartered at the Sydney Nanoscience Hub, a new $150 million facility built by the University of Sydney with a $40 million contribution from the Australian government’s Education Investment Fund.

The new Hub facilities are shared with the wider Australian research community via two National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy capabilities: the Australian National Fabrication Facility; and the Australian Microscopy and Microanalysis Research Facility.

Researchers at the Institute contribute to two Australian Council Centres of Excellence: CUDOS, the Centre for Ultrahigh Bandwidth Devices for Optical Systems; and EQuS, the Centre for Engineered Quantum Systems.

About the Hub: facilities and programs

The building is a high-precision facility with:

  • floating research laboratory floors built on a concrete slab that is decoupled from the walls, to create an incredibly stable environment with low vibrations for high-precision measurements
  • electromagnetic shielding in research laboratories designed to suppress unwanted interference from outside the lab
  • special air conditioning in the research laboratories designed to keep room temperatures stable to within 0.1 degree by replacing all air in the room once every minute
  • a 5000 litre liquid nitrogen vessel that supplies gaseous nitrogen to the labs and cleanroom

The mechanical vibrations, the acoustics and even the lighting for the building have been designed and built to exacting standards.

The laboratories are conveniently located in close proximity to the cleanrooms, creating an efficient flow from research to production of prototype devices.

Fabrication, cleanroom and microscopy facilities

The Research and Prototype Foundry allows researchers to make microstructures with nanoscale precision in a variety of materials using lithography.

The Foundry also contains more than 700sqm of cleanroom space over two levels – ISO Class 5 and ISO Class 7 – comparable to production-level facilities found in major semiconductor foundries.

Alongside the Foundry, the Sydney Microscopy and Microanalysis suites provide access to world class instruments, specialist staff, services and training to enable research into physical and biological structures at micro, nano and atomic scales.

What the specifications mean

Labs – floating floors; all air replaced every minute to maintain temperature

Cleanroom –100 times cleaner air than in a medical operating theatre

TEM suite – one of the most electromagnetically and mechanically stable environments in the world.

“We’re aiming our lasers to hit a single atom. We used to miss all the time. Trucks on the road interfered with magnetics fields and caused faint vibrations. So we had to align the lasers daily. They now stay stable for weeks. That’s just one example of how the new facilities are making us more effective.”


Three Flagship programs

Measurement and Control at the Nanoscale

Professor David Reilly

Quantum-limited measurement and manipulation of nanoscale systems, for example the spin of fundamental particles.

Professor David Reilly’s group works at the interface of quantum science, nanoscale condensed matter systems, and cryogenic electronics and hardware. His group seeks to understand the laws of nature at the nanoscale and then harness them to build technologies.

“The Sydney Nanoscience Hub is exciting because we have the environmental conditions that we need to do the science that we want to do – to control matter and light at the nanoscale. Having our research laboratories so close to the cleanroom fabrication facility is extremely powerful and means we can go faster in terms of progress in our research,” said Professor Reilly.

“We’re working on localising and controlling single electron spins inside semiconductor devices – so these devices are very similar to the ones that you’ll find in your mobile phone.”

“We’re using those semiconductor systems though as a host to be able to trap and control single electron states and use those electrons to start to build quantum mechanical technologies – that is, technologies that exploit the phenomena of quantum physics: quantum superposition, quantum measurement and quantum entanglement – three unique properties of the quantum realm.”

“We’re extremely excited today to be living in this time, to be doing research at the moment where quantum physics is coming alive: the basic, fundamental aspects of nature at the nanoscale – the quantum physics – is something that we’re teasing out every single day – and we’re excited because we can see a path from those experiments now to building technologies that are going to be extremely powerful.”

“Eventually if we’re able to scale up this quantum technology, then we think it may be very useful – for computing, for communications, for basic measurement, for being able to measure things that we can’t measure today, and for doing simulation of a range of different types of chemicals. Those chemicals could be new catalysts, they could be new types of pharmaceuticals for health and medicine.”

To get there – to be able to scale up this technology, is going to require nothing short of a revolution in quantum systems and in the classical systems that we’re going to need in order to be able to interface with quantum devices.

To build a quantum computer you need more than just the Q-bits; more than just the elementary constituents of matter – the electrons and so on. You also need a range of electronics and classical control technology that is pushing the limit of what’s available today.

So we’ve been focusing on both aspects in parallel and our plan is over the next few years to see these classical and quantum streams meet up in order to be able to build quantum machines.

Nano diamonds tackle cancer

David and his team in the Australian Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology have found that nanoscale synthetic diamonds can light up early-stage cancers in MRI scans, identifying cancerous tumours before they become life threatening.

“This opens the way for us to image and target cancers,” says Professor Reilly.

“We’re exploring the use of nano diamonds for delivering drugs during chemotherapy because they are largely non-toxic and non-reactive.”

“We thought we could build on these non-toxic properties, realising that diamonds have magnetic characteristics enabling them to act as beacons in MRIs. We effectively turned a pharmaceutical problem into a physics problem.”

Professor Reilly’s team has been able to hyperpolarise nano diamonds – a process of aligning atoms inside a diamond so they create a signal that can be detected by an MRI scanner.

“We have attached these hyperpolarised diamonds to molecules that target cancers, to track the movement of the molecules through the body with an MRI.”

The next stage of the team’s work involves working with medical researchers to test the new technology on animals.

Quantum simulation

Associate Professor Michael J. Biercuk

Associate Professor Michael J. Biercuk is the Director of the Quantum Control Laboratory. He’s an experimental physicist working on a new generation of quantum technologies.

“Quantum computers will be able to perform calculations that would need a current computer that is larger than the size of the known universe, but they will do it all at the scale of millimetres,” says Associate Professor Biercuk.

“Quantum computers aren’t just an improvement on our current computers; they are a whole new way of computing.”

Quantum computers are set to revolutionise our world by using some of the very peculiar rules of the quantum universe, like the complicated concept of superposition, where a quantum particle, such as an electron or photon, can be in two or more states at once. That means two or more pieces of information can be held at the same time on each quantum bit, increasing the calculation power exponentially.

“Quantum mechanics already drive some key aspects of our daily lives – from smartphones to Global Positioning – but these technologies only scratch the surface of what is possible.

“Quantum computers will change the way we do commerce, information security, defence and modelling complex systems like climate change.”

“The facilities we’ve designed and built in the Sydney Nanoscience Hub over the past five years are truly among the most advanced in the world. The extraordinary level of controls we’ve realised in the building are the fundamental enablers allowing us to make serious advances in our work,” said Associate Professor Biercuk.

Nanoscale Photonic Circuits

Professor Benjamin Eggleton

Benjamin and his colleagues at the University of Sydney and CUDOS are developing a photonic chip that will operate 1000 times faster than today’s electron equivalent. It will enable information processing that is smaller, faster, smarter and greener.

The team have had a series of inventions and broke the world record for optical switching. Their research focuses are:

  • The first flexible microwave processor chip including for high-capacity wireless communications. Professor Eggleton’s unique approach – which harnesses the interaction between light and sound waves in chips to manipulate microwaves – has processing performance that is orders of magnitudes above existing technologies.Long term application is on mobile communications (5G and well beyond) and radar. The frequencies are getting longer and harder to process with traditional approaches.
    “If we can integrate the RF [radio frequency] photonic processor in to a silicon chip then it will be very cheap and will transform communication systems.”
  • The first chip-based photon on demand source – a quantum light source. “This is the holy grail for quantum communications and quantum computing. The ability to generate photons on demand would provide a basis for quantum-secure communication systems.”
  • Creating the first fully integrated lab-on-a-chip (which could be integrated into the smart phone) with the ability to do things such as monitor air pollution and be used for self-contained low-cost diagnosis of disease, including possibly cancer.

Fibre optics is the backbone of the internet and provides connections between faster computers. Now we’re building fibre optics onto a photonic chip using nanophotonics.

Photonics underpins a $7 trillion annual industry (US National Academy of Science report, 2012).

The benefit of being at the Nanoscience Hub

“The integration of our labs, cleanrooms and teaching facilities for the first time, transforms the way we perform experimental research,” said Professor Eggleton. “Now we have a closed loop for designing, fabricating and characterising nanophotonics devices, which had not been possible before. Other institutes have labs next to clean rooms but they do not have the combination of the specially designed photonics laboratories with the clean room facility that will house an end-to-end nano-lithography facility. This is unique in Australia.”

Batteries beyond lithium, new catalysts for biofuels

Professor Thomas Maschmeyer – AINST Director

Professor Thomas Maschmeyer is the Director of the Australian Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology (AINST) and an experimental chemist. He is working to integrate new battery and solar cell technologies into the walls and roofs of new houses, and to transform the at times somewhat ‘black art’ of catalysis – the process that cracks crude oil into useful fuels, oils and chemicals at every refinery, and that will be central to efficient biofuel production. He has already helped to create over 200 new jobs with four spin-out companies.

“Developing better batteries and catalysts has been challenging,” he says. “We understood the reactions that were taking place. But we couldn’t see exactly where they were happening on the surface of the materials involved. You’d develop a new catalyst, use it for an hour, find it was ruined, and have to go back to the drawing board. We were guessing at what was happening to the active surfaces over time.”

“Now we can use a suite of instruments, including various high resolution microscopes and spectroscopic mapping tools to look at dynamic changes on the nanoscale, to see what’s happened (or even what is happening in real time), and then develop more stable chemical structures for batteries and catalysts, which in their design incorporate strategies to deal with and exploit their changing nature.”

He believes that the new facilities at the Hub will double or triple the effectiveness of his team. “We have a fantastic team of researchers who’ve published a truckload of high-impact papers over the years. But how do you harness all that intellect to create real batteries, catalysts and jobs? This is how… this Institute brings together the engineering, science, instrumentation, facilities, people and connections to industry needed to put our researchers ahead of the pack.”

Batteries beyond lithium

Lithium batteries have transformed power storage – from smartphones to electric cars and submarines. But like every battery their chemical composition changes through every charge cycle. Lithium ions sitting in layers of graphite move between electrodes and change the oxidation state of, e.g. magnesium oxide. The chemical rearrangements cause the graphite and oxide layers to physically expand and contract by up to 15 per cent at every cycle, cracking and detaching from the electrodes.

Thomas has eliminated the stack of cards. Instead, his design has a wobbly carbon electrode, with a gel touching it. The design is self-healing.

He has used this idea to create zinc-bromine batteries that transport ions embedded in a gel. These batteries are stable and flexible and use nano-engineered gel structures and surfaces on the electrodes. The gel also acts as fire retardant. His spin-out company Gelion Technologies is currently discussing with Lend Lease how this battery technology could be built into the walls and roofs of new buildings.

“You won’t need a battery in the garage. Instead it will be in the walls and roof – perhaps as roof tiles, or solar shingles™, with a solar panel on one side and a battery on the other, and all clipping together. City office buildings will become huge batteries capturing off-peak energy and stabilising the power grid.”

“Zinc and bromine are abundant and inexpensive commodities. Our battery designs are a platform technology that will enable commercially viable, grid-supporting storage solutions; as well as inexpensive, flexible, fast and safe new batteries, sufficiently compact to be also usable in domestic solar systems and electric vehicles.”

Thomas’s Sydney colleagues are also looking at new lithium-based technologies – trying to improve the density and mobility of the lithium ions, which would increase capacity and make charging faster and improve energy density.

Nanoengineered materials are also key to the solar cell side – the Institute is working on solar cells based on perovskite minerals. Although they have reached 20 per cent efficiency, the cells are still unstable. Thomas says they can solve that problem.

Not only are nano-engineering concepts changing battery design, they are also transforming industrial catalysts.

Catalysts for biofuels and other unconventional fuels

Every oil refinery depends on catalysts – made of materials such as zeolites and platinum they reduce the activation point of reactions, making it easier to turn crude oil into useful fuels, oils, and chemicals.

But the development of more efficient catalysts that stay the course of time has been hit and miss because the action is taking place at dynamically changing nano-sized surfaces. The Hub’s electron microscopes can help visualise exactly what is happening and aid Thomas and his colleagues in turning the ‘black art of catalyst design’ into a ‘predictive art’, based on high level science.

Thomas has the industry contacts to bring his work to life. While at Delft University in Holland he consulted to Shell, DSM and other global businesses. In Australia he has created a group of three companies based on his ideas for catalysts.

Ignite Energy Resources is an Australian company with a patented ‘catalytic hydrothermal reactor technology (Cat-HTR™), that uses water at near-supercritical temperatures together with nanostructured catalysts to upgrade lignite into synthetic crude oil and micronised refined carbon (MRC). This technology would reduce CO2 emissions associated with brown coal power by more than 50%, making it comparable to natural gas.

Licella using a related but distinctive approach has been set up to upgrade waste biomass (non-edible) into biocrude to produce renewable fuels and chemicals.

A 10,000 tonne per year pilot plant for both companies is already in operation in Somersby, NSW and discussions regarding full-scale (200,000 – 350,000 tonne per year) systems are well advanced with partners in North America and Scandinavia.

“It’s taken us nine years to develop this system. I believe that with AINST we could have knocked four years off the development time.”

A profile is available on Thomas and his development philosophy (insert link)

The impact of the Institute

“In AINST, we’ve brought together our expertise in physics, chemistry, engineering and the medical sciences, to work together in this amazing new building, so that our researchers and our students can devise, fabricate, test and deploy exciting new nanoscale science and technology that will change the world,” said Professor Maschmeyer.

“All our work at AINST connects at the nanoscale. No matter whether reaching that scale with ‘top-down’ nanofabrication (physics) or with ‘bottom-up’ self-assembly (chemistry), we can actually have meaningful conversations across physics, chemistry and medicine, due to the intersection of skills, insights and instrumental capacity at this particular length scale across the disciplines.

“That’s leading to new opportunities. Recently we had a room of physicists, chemists, engineers, medical researchers, and clinicians talking together and identifying real world problems that we can solve together.”

“There was a lot of scepticism that such a group could really work closely together. We’re showing that they can and that the university has the stamina and commitment to really create these linkages long term.”

So AINST is a model for the future of research at the University of Sydney.

Clever devices will come from the specialist facilities at the hub. But clever ideas will come from the meeting places when physicists, chemists, biologists and engineers share ideas.

New steel and aluminium

Professor Simon Ringer – Director, Sydney Nanoscience Hub and of the Research and Prototype Foundry

Professor Simon Ringer is the director of the Sydney Nanoscience Hub, and Research and Prototype Foundry, AINST. He is a materials scientist working on a new generation of nanostructured materials. Using the tools of the Nanoscience Hub he can track individual atoms in aluminium, steel, and silicon chips for example.

Crazy strong aluminium

Professor Ringer is using nanostructures in materials to create super strong metals. One of his successes is an extremely light but extremely strong form of aluminium alloy.

“Our new aluminium alloy is crazily strong, but very light, so it’s set to revolutionise numerous industries and could lead to, for example, light aircraft or cars that are extremely fuel efficient, but also extremely hard to damage.”

Strong flexible steel

Professor Ringer and his colleagues have invented a third generation steel.

Steel can be flexible and weak. Or it can be strong and brittle. They’ve created a nano-structured steel that’s flexible and strong. It could take 100 kg off the weight of a regular steel framed car. That will save fuel, money and carbon emissions.

The key was that they could use their electron microscopes to watch exactly where manganese atoms go as the steel is heat treated. And that meant they could rapidly test multiple variations until they hit on the perfect treatment.

They’ve already made a 300 kg slab for their commercial partners. The technology will allow them to engineer a range of steels each optimised for specific uses in trains, cars, planes, trucks and construction.

Improving Australian steel making

Researchers at AINST have helped Bluescope steel improve their patented Castrip steel making process. Castrip is used to make a wide range of low-carbon steel products for construction. The AINST team have helped Bluescope understand how Castrip is working at an atomic level and how they can control the process to make higher value steel suited for cars and other transport applications.

Better silicon chips

The transistors on the latest silicon computer chips are now so small that just one atom of for example aluminium out of place can ruin a chip. The aluminium acts as a dopant, modifying the conductivity of the silicon. In the past it was good enough to say how many parts per million of the dopant was present. Now we need to know exactly where the atoms are. The microscopes at the Hub allow are allowing researchers to do just that – combining real world observation with theory to create more powerful chips.

What difference will the Hub make?

“Our new Research and Prototype Foundry features over 700 square metres of cleanroom space and leading edge nanolithography instruments. This enables our researchers to write out and build the structures that they imagine, with nanoscale precision.

“Having the cleanroom, microscopy suites and research labs so close together makes for an efficient work flow from research all the way through to the production of prototype devices,” said Professor Ringer.

“This adds up to a truly unique research enterprise – one that is clearly the leading nanoscience research institute in Australia and one that is truly world class.”

Health and quantum mechanics

Professor Zdenka Kuncic – Director, Community and Research

In addition to her director role in AINST, Professor Kuncic and her colleagues are using physics-based strategies and fundamental physical principles to advance our understanding of complex living systems and human diseases.

She and her team are using one of the unusual properties of quantum mechanics – quantum entanglement, where two particles become linked no matter how far away they are to each other – to create better medical scans.

“We already use the detection of quantum particles in positron emission tomography – PET – scans, which detect positrons as they collide with electrons and produce gamma ray photons. Existing PET scans detect the energy emitted to identify these pairs of annihilating electrons and positrons, but this method is limited because there are large uncertainties.

“We are developing a new detector system that exploits the polarisation correlation – that is the entanglement – inherent in annihilation photons. Using the polarisation correlation can vastly improve sensitivity and overall image quality.”

Watching and fine-tuning radiation therapy in action

AINST researchers are already working with colleagues at the Ingham Medical Research Institute, to develop a scintillating fibre optic array medical detector system with dual-functionality of imaging tumours and measuring 3D dose distribution delivered during cancer radiation therapy. This work has attracted commercial interest from Perkin-Elmer Pty Ltd, global leaders in medical imaging technologies, and the leading industry for these detector systems, which are standard fittings on all hospital-based medical radiation linear accelerator machines (over 10,000 worldwide). The work is supported by an ARC Linkage grant.

They are now optimising the design of the next prototype, which they plan to fabricate in-house in the Sydney Nanoscience Hub Research and Prototype Foundry.

Nanoparticle radio sensitisation

AINST researchers are also working with colleagues at the University of Sydney and the Kolling Institute of Medical Research, we are developing magneto-radio-sensitive nanoparticles for magnetically-guided targeted radiation therapy, particularly for brain cancer metastasis. This will use the Australian MRI-Linac, a $15M facility currently under construction in Sydney, that integrates Magnetic Resonance Imaging with a medical linear accelerator. The ultimate goal is to integrate this with novel frontline radio-immuno-therapies, which are showing spectacular results on their own, but will be enhanced by the targeting and imaging capabilities of these nanoparticles.

The Hub’s specifications

Labs – floating floors; all air replaced every minute to maintain temperature

Cleanroom –100 times cleaner air than in a medical operating theatre

TEM suite – one of the most electromagnetically and mechanically stable environments in the world.

Our research labs span a variety of specifications, but our “precision metrology” laboratories have combinations of technical performance that are unmatched in comparable facilities globally. These include extremely tight electromagnetic interference specifications (<10nT pp fluctuations); vibration (better than VCG criterion – the tightest spec developed – a particular metric for floor vibration over a frequency band); air temperature stability (temp stable to within +/- 0.1C); air pressure (fluctuations <~5-7 Pa); humidity (stable +/-5%).

These specs are most important in context: For instance, a typical office is only stable in temperature to about +/-3 C. We have to be 30 times more stable all while hosting a huge amount of electrical equipment putting out large amounts of heat. We do this by replacing all of the air in the room roughly once per minute. Similarly, our labs, in order to meet these vibration criteria, need to be mechanically disconnected from the rest of the building – there can’t be any piece of concrete, piping, etc touching the main structure and the lab floor. A truck driving by distorts the Earth’s magnetic field by >10x our largest tolerable specification, so we have to put in place countermeasures such as Al shielding in the walls and active compensation systems to detect and offset the effect of that truck. And all of this has to be done in a way that doesn’t then violate other specifications such as vibration isolation.

Microscopy (Transmission Electron Microscope – TEM) Suite

The Australian Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology is about to commence the procurement process for a new aberration corrected transmission electron microscope. This microscope allows us to ‘see’ at the highest possible resolution.

Transmission electron microscopy is a well-established high-resolution microscopy method. The correction of aberrations in the electron beam leads to a ‘quantum leap’ improvement in the achievable resolution (now 0.2 nm resolution on commercial instruments). Ancillary instrumentation including energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy and electron energy loss spectroscopy and filtering, allows us to also provide information about the types of atoms present, and even the bonds between them.

This moves us into the realm of being able to view directly the arrangement of atoms within materials, which is important for understanding how they behave.

The fundamental ability to image at the atomic scale is essential for most advanced materials research. For example, researchers at the University of Sydney are working on the design of new chemical processing routes via catalysis which could lead to commercially viable biofuels. For this work, it is essential to understand the distribution of atoms within the catalyst nanoparticles under development, which required atomic scale microscopy.

New ionic liquid gel (ionogels) based batteries are a promising new frontier for energy storage. However, for this technology to advance, an atomic-scale understanding of the electrode-supported is needed.

Other new science that will be enabled by the facility includes semiconductor nanowires – building blocks that have the potential to transform solar cells, light emitting diodes and transistors. The tool will even be used to better understand how accurately rocks can be dated, by looking at the atomic-scale distribution of the isotopes used to make these calculations.

The TEM suite, which has been specifically designed to house this instrument, is situated adjacent to a state-of-the-art clean room facility.
These instruments are extremely sensitive, so many millions of dollars have been spent on fitting out the labs to the highest possible specifications. To minimise vibrations and magnetic fields, they are located away from loading docks, lifts, utility, any sources of EMI on a separate slab. They have a temperature stability +/- 0.1 degrees C within 5 minute intervals at the column, and air change rate of 45 acph / 3.75 m/min, a Relative humidity of +/- 5% and positive pressure 5Pa The EMI shielding 0.1 mG (p-p) is achieved by 6mm welded aluminium plate box structure, silicon steel layers and active cancellation.

Quantum simulation in tightly controlled environments

Some buildings have suffered inconveniences associated with realigning optics due to temperature instabilities for example. Small temperature changes in the lab cause everything to expand and contract. When we have laser beams bouncing off of many mirrors (maybe 20-50 optical elements in a beamline) and stretching over several meters, changes of about half a degree C can move a beam by the better part of a millimetre. The result is that if we’re trying to shine a laser on a single atom, we miss. At a laboratory one of our scientists worked at previously, it was not well controlled in terms of temperature and they would generally spend about half the day realigning lasers to account for temperature changes overnight and not be able to commence ‘work’ until late afternoon – that is how almost every day was spent and once a week they generally had to go through a much more complex realignment process. With the precisely controlled environments at the Sydney Nanoscience Hub, we have already seen that lasers remain aligned for weeks or months without the need to realign at all.


The co-location with the clean room facility will ensure we have a close loop for designing, fabricating and characterising nanophotonics devices, which has not been possible. Other institutes have loans next to clean rooms but they do not have such expansive photonics labs with the complete set of tools for fabricating nanophotonics drives. The combination of the specially designed laboratories with the clean room facility that will house an end-end nanolithography facility is unique in Australia.

These instruments are crucial because nanoscale lithographic apparatus are indispensable tools for photonics, used to manufacture integrated circuits, flat panel displays, optoelectronic and photonic devices as well as micro-electromechanical systems. Innovations in this field will continue to drive development in the semiconductor industry.

Read more about the Institute at http://sydney.edu.au/nano/