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Shannon ABC awarded funding under the National Access Programme(NAP)

Shannon ABC Strand Leader at Limerick Institute of Technology, Dr Patrick Murray, was recently awarded funding under the National Access Programme to avail of the state-of-the-art facilities at the Tyndall National Institute. The National Access Programme provides the opportunity for researchers in all Irish Universities, Institutes of Technology and Research Institutes to be granted fully funded access to the Tyndall National Institutes' facilities and expertise, based on evaluation by an external evaluation committee.

The Tyndall National Institute, University College Cork is one of Europe's leading research centres, specialising in ICT hardware research. It has over 420 researchers, students and support staff and receives €32 million in annual research funding. Tyndall researchers publish on average 200 peer reviewed papers per year and have over 200 industry partnerships and customers world-wide.

The objectives of the work to be performed at Tyndall on Dr Murray’s project are to investigate the morphology and surface chemistry of novel nanostructures generated using natural systems. Traditional synthetic methodologies involve multistep physical and chemical processes that use high temperature and high pressure, large amounts of energy and toxic substances that are harmful to humans and produce pollution to the environment. Instead, a greener, more environmentally benign natural alternative has been potentially developed, and will be investigated further using UV spectral analysis and photography. This will allow definition of the specific production parameters required for the controlled sustainable production of monodisperse nanoparticles of defined size and shape for commercial applications.

Synthetic versions of these nanostructures have found importance in many areas of science and technology, including biomedical science, imaging technology, sensor diagnostics, electronics, packaging, cosmetics, and biotechnology. Thus a natural source that would have similar applicability, and of sustainable production, would be of profound significance.

The project is due to start in the coming months and Shannon ABC looks forward to developing further the collaborative relationship with the Tyndall National Institute.