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NEW CRP: Enhancing the Beneficial Effects of Radiation Processing in Nanotechnology (F22070)

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Creation of a wide variety of nanostructures by ionizing radiation

Creation of a wide variety of nanostructures by ionizing radiation. (Illustration: Professor Wanvimol Pasanphan, Kasetsart University)

Starting in 2018, the IAEA is launching a new 4-year Coordinated Research Project (CRP) that will enhance the capability of Member States in the application of nanotechnology in several areas including environmental protection and remediation, electronics and energy, and advanced functional materials.

Radiation processing has long been recognized as an energy efficient technology with strong application potential in several industrial areas. Today, the specific advantages it presents are being utilised by nanomaterials and nanoscale engineering for applications in such diverse sectors as medicine and healthcare, electronics, energy, environment, advanced materials and food and agriculture. It is important that up-to-date information on nanoscience and nanotechnology be shared among academic and industrial research centres with complementary expertise. Sharing this information will support Member States in developing methodologies and technologies for the use of radiation in the synthesis, modification, fabrication, and characterisation of nanomaterials.

In this CRP, the synthesis and fabrication of nano-particles and nano-structures will be done using radiation-induced reactions. These reactions will be initiated by various ionizing radiations, including gamma ray, electron beam, X-ray and ion beam. Radiation processing is a unique tool for synthesizing nanomaterials of various types and offers a promising alternative to conventional synthetic methods for several reasons. In particular, it is more environmentally friendly because it consumes less energy, creates less waste and uses less chemicals.

As part of a previous CRP, ‘Nanoscale Radiation Engineering of Advanced Materials for Potential Biomedical Applications’ (2008-2012), nanomaterials prepared using high energy radiation were characterised and evaluated for applications as diverse as food packaging, biomedical devices, theranostics, coatings, sensors for security systems, water purification units, high performance composite materials. There is now a near-future need for supporting new collaborative action aimed at the development of novel generic nanofabrication methodologies (synthesis of anisotropic nanoparticles, advanced graft polymerization, swift heavy ion structuration), and new specific value-added products by using the potential of the radiation processing toolbox as well as the recent advances of nanoscience.

Nanotechnology in compliance with the Sustainable Development Goals (Illustration: IAEA)

CRP Overall Objective:

The primary goal of this CRP is to exploit innovative methodologies and technologies in order to fabricate high performance and high value-added nano-products for applications in electronics, energy, environment and advanced materials.

Specific Research Objectives:

  • To develop processes, techniques and protocols for radiation-driven nanofabrication of value-added products;
  • To investigate key factors behind scientific challenges in radiation processing, such as structural and functional parameters, and methodological and technological aspects;
  • To endeavour to transfer research results to end-users;
  • To establish and develop the network of collaboration in the field of radiation-driven nanofabrication.

How to join the CRP:

Please submit your Proposal for Research Contract or Agreement by 31 October 2018 directly to the IAEA’s Research Contracts Administration Section, using the appropriate template on the CRA website (preferably via email).

Nanotechnology, with its strong potential for future applications, is just one of the many ways nuclear technology science is used to improve quality of life – and will be one of the subjects discussed at November’s  IAEA Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Science and Technology. 

 

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