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NanoKTN and CEMMNT to host innovative surface engineering conference

The Nanotechnology Knowledge Transfer Network (NanoKTN), one of the UK’s primary knowledge-based networks for Micro and Nanotechnologies, and CEMMNT (The Centre of Excellence for Micro and Nano Technologies), are pleased to announce their High Performance Thin-Film Coatings conference which will highlight solutions to key issues in surface engineering of high performance thin film coatings.

The development of today’s innovative products and their corresponding manufacturing processes is extremely demanding and requires manufacturing processes that are ever more robust and reliable. Many products now require the use of performance and functional films to improve cost reduction and increase service lifetimes whilst reducing the environmental burden. The integrity of such thin films and coatings is absolutely crucial to ensure the best possible performance characteristics and business sustainability. This conference will bring together the components of this supply chain in one place to present and discuss the opportunities and challenges for the UK.

Alistair Kean, Technical Director at Mantis Deposition, will be presenting the production of nanoparticle coatings for high performance structural applications. He will present findings from specific projects including SOLAMON, an EU FP7 funded project which is examining plasmonic light harvesting to increase the efficiency of thin film photovoltaics.

Robert Bowman, Professor of Materials Physics at the Queen’s University Belfast, will provide an introduction and overview of ANSIN, a new advanced materials coating and metrology research facility at Queen’s University in Northern Ireland, established through the support of founding partner Seagate Technology. Bowman’s presentation will focus on the benefits of the ANSIN facility and how it aims to provide a bridge between the capabilities of University research facilities and the needs of advanced coatings manufacturing.
Additional presentations will be delivered by key professionals from Windsor Scientific, Oxford Instruments Plasma Technology, the National Physical Laboratory (NPL), and the Universities of Loughborough, Manchester and Oxford.

The event will conclude with an open discussion on the importance of integrity of thin films, highlighting the challenges and opportunities for this area, and it will also reflect on the latest UK report on surface engineering produced by the Materials KTN and Materials UK.

"The characterisation of materials is an important part of the industrial process as it acts as quality control and assurance and as part of the research and development of new processes, materials and products. Nanometrology and its application underpins all aspects of nano-scale technologies and by providing events like this, the NanoKTN aim to support the nanotechnology and thin-film coatings industry," explains Dr James Johnstone, Theme Manager at the NanoKTN.

Johnstone continues, "By encouraging networking and the transfer of information, we aim to help businesses realise the advantages of potential applications. Events like this are crucial in building the necessary supply chain to allow solutions to be developed and shared."

The one day seminar and workshop is aimed at manufacturers of process equipment, instrumentation companies and also innovators and applicators of new thin films. Complementing the event will be an exhibition showcasing the products and services of companies including Oxford Instruments, Nightingale EOS Limited, LOT Oriel and Cryogenic Ltd. A poster competition is also open to UK academics and research institutes with a cash prize sponsored by the Materials and Characterisation Group of the Institute of Physics.

High Performance Thin-Film Coatings – Ensuring Nanoscale Manufacturing Integrity takes place on 30th November 2010 at the Institute of Physics, London. For more information about this event and details of how to register, please visit www.nanoktn.com.

Established by the Technology Strategy Board, the NanoKTN is managed by Centre for Process Innovation Ltd, a leading technology development and consulting company.

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