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International Conference on Nanoscience and Technology in Basel

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Zurich and Basel, Switzerland, 4 July 2006—Will Basel become the “Woodstock” of nanoscience on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the scanning tunneling microscope, the instrument that in 1981 unlocked the nanoscale universe?

The forthcoming International Conference on Nanoscience and Technology (ICN&T 2006) in Basel, Switzerland, from July 31 to August 4, has all the ingredients to write nano history: four Nobel Prize winners and 1500 scientists will meet to discuss their cutting-edge insights into a vast scope of topics ranging from pure science to biology, medicine, and computing. There will also be two exhibitions for the general public, the Nanorama and a Nanotruck, which will allow fascinating glimpses at the mysterious world of the ultrasmall dimension.

The ICN&T 2006 celebrates the 25th anniversary of the scanning tunneling microscope, which for the first time allowed researchers to access the world of atoms. This extraordinary instrument was invented by Gerd Binnig and Heinrich Rohrer at the IBM (NYSE: IBM) Zurich Research Laboratory in Rüschlikon in 1981. Five years later, their ground-breaking invention was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics. The two nanoscience pioneers will be honored in a special opening symposium on July 31. On this occasion, John Polanyi, who received the 1986 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, will also speak. On August 1, Jean-Marie Lehn, Nobel laureate in Chemistry in 1987, will open the day’s presentations and introduce the topic of nanochemistry.

The scope of topics covered by the conference could be summed up nicely by the title of Heinrich Rohrer’s opening lecture: “Nano: From the Past to the Future.” The concluding lecture on Friday, August 4, will be Don Eigler’s talk entitled “Computation in Small Structures: A Long Road to an Uncertain Destination.” In the five days of the conference, almost every aspect of nanoscience will be discussed in sessions on nanobiology, nanomedicine, nanosystems, nanomechanics, nano-optics, molecular electronics, quantum computing and spintronics, materials, surface probe microscopy instrumentation, and many more. ICN&T 2006 truly has the makings of becoming the Woodstock of nanoscience.

Nanoscience is considered a research area at the cutting edge, uniting the fields of physics, chemistry, biology and molecular medicine. In these areas, a new generation of researchers are working on gaining interdiscliplinary insight and on transposing their results as rapidly as possible into usable technologies.

In conjunction with the conference, an international trade show will be held, which will unite more than 50 companies active in the area of nanotechnology. On 1000 square meters, they will present their latest products.

But also non-experts will be able to explore the universe of nanotechnology. In the Nanorama, they are invited to discover in an interactive tour the applications, visions and open questions of this fascinating world on the smallest scale. And from July 29 to 31, a special “Nanotruck” with a traveling exhibition on nanotechnology will be located on Barfüsserplatz and near the Congress Center fairground.

Switzerland is one of the leading countries in nanoscience. In 2001, the National Center of Competence in Research (NCCR) was launched, with the University of Basel as the leading house. The nanoscale science network also includes the Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology in Zurich (ETH) and Lausanne (EPF) as well as the Universities of Zurich and Neuchatel, the CSEM, the PSI, IBM Research - Zurich, and the University of Applied Sciences in Northwestern Switzerland.

Press contact

Nicole Strachowski
Media Relations
IBM Research - Zurich
Tel +41 44 724 84 45

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