Home > Press > Energy Summit at nanoTX’06 ends with call to action
Energy Summit at nanoTX’06 ends with call to action by partnership in three vital areas
Dalas, TX | Posted on November 3, 2006
Four weeks after close of the Energy Summit at one of the world’s largest nanotechnology conferences, nanoTX'06, organizers say findings call for new, aggressive collaboration between government, industry and science.
The nanoTX'06 Energy Summit was organized by the University of Texas, Dallas, and hosted by Dr. Alan MacDiarmid, 2000 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry and James Von Ehr Distinguished Chair in Science at UTD. The conference panel totally agreed with the theories of nanotechnology pioneer, the late Dr. Richard Smalley, that the world’s most intractable challenges, like energy, and water and disease, can be solved by concentrating on energy first. “The answer to many of the world’s most pressing problems—famine, poverty, terrorism, war, poor health—will be found in solving the world’s energy equation,” Dr. MacDiarmid told reporters. “Clean energy derived from renewable sources, especially agricultural, holds the promise of dramatically improving the living conditions of billions of people everywhere.”
Chief assistant to Dr. MacDiarmid and prime organizer of the Energy Summit is Peter Balbus, Managing Director of Pragmaxis, who added that “…solving the world’s energy challenges (will) create enormous opportunities for wealth creation and radically (shift) the balance of geopolitical power in many positive ways.”
Panel member Sam Hatcher, CEO of Liberty Holdings, suggested “the next great area of promising energy research will be biofuels derived from wood chip feedstocks.” Balbus agreed with Hatcher, but added that “the convergence of traditionally unrelated science and engineering disciplines—including agriculture, agronomy, botany, chemical engineering, energy, AND nanoscience—are creating an unprecedented level of interest and focus in solving the world’s energy challenges.”
Balbus announced seven resolutions that came out of this year’s Energy Summit at nanoTX'06:
- Committed to working towards the launch of the Alan G. MacDiarmid Institute for BioEnergy as a global repository for emerging bioenergy techniques and scientific advancements.
- Committed to returning to nanoTX'07 with an expanded program including a special tutorial titled “Energy 101.”
- Identified the need for universities and private sector researchers to work more collaboratively to avoid reinventing the wheel and better integrate the advanced energy research being performed around the world.
- Called on local colleges and universities to look beyond their traditional curricula with stand-alone departments and narrow course areas to broadly embrace cross- and multi-disciplinary approaches to educating the scientists and engineers of the future.
- Called on industry to play a more visible and active role in supporting the efforts underway to solve the world’s energy challenges.
- Called on the local business community to demand more from their government and educational institutions in identifying and applying resources to solving the real-world problems of declining energy reserves, global warming and energy distribution shortfalls.
- Providing more than 6 hours of content focused on educating conference attendees about the promise and challenges of bioenergy, the role nanoscience can play in advancing our efforts, and outlining the key technical and policy issues that will need to be addressed if these efforts are to be successful.
H. Ross Perot of Dallas, internationally renowned business leader and two time Presidential candidate, delivered the opening remarks to a large crowd in the Arena at nanoTX’06 September 27. Chosen in 2004 as one of history's 10 greatest entrepreneurs, Mr. Perot is known to have followed advances in nanotechnology since 1999. Today Mr. Perot is heavily invested in nanotechnology.
Texas Governor Rick Perry joined Texas Instruments president Rich Templeton and SRC CEO Larry Sumney in announcing a partnership of $30Million to attract top scientists to Texas. This funding will build on efforts and continue work to establish a collaborative network of well-equipped research centers to rapidly develop and promote nanotechnology.
Other celebrities at the event included Dr. Tadashi Sasaki (91); and His Royal Highness The Duke of York, Prince Andrew. Photos and testimonials may be viewed at the nanoTX web site, or by going directly here.
Presented by the Texas Nanotechnology Initiative, whose president is Austin attorney Kelly Kordzik, the event carries the theme: The Promise of Tomorrow—The Business of Nanotechnology. Sponsors include Lockheed Martin, Applied Materials, Texas Instruments, McKool Smith, LLC; the Japanese Consulate, Authentix, Winstead, Zyvex, BioForce Nanosciences, Raymor Industries of Quebec, the British Consulate; Association for Manufacturing Excellence, among other key firms and organizations in nanotechnology.
nanoTX’06 drew the top minds in four vital and interrelated nanotech areas of commerce: Semiconductor/MEMS/NEMS, Defense/Homeland Security/Aerospace, Biomed/Health Sciences, and Energy/Chemical/Environment, plus an intense study of Trends/Finance/Investing by leading experts.
“An event of this quality and magnitude draws world-wide attention to Texas,” said Kordzik. Never before such a gathering of the top minds in nanotechnology. About 4000 people attended nanoTX'06. Demographics are being compiled and results so far can be viewed here
One of the highlights of nanoTX’06 was the Nobel Laureate Legends reception, dedicated to the memory of the late Richard Smalley and Jack Kilby, where a 30 minute documentary on the lives of both historic men debuted. The documentary played to rave reviews (more can be learned at the web site, www.nanotx.biz). On stage, Nobel Prize winners in various related fields openly discussed their views with moderator Jim Von Ehr, Founder and CEO Zyvex. Among the six Nobel laureates honored were Dr. Robert Curl of Rice University (Buckyball fame, and colleague of Dr. Smalley); Dr. Alan MacDiarmid of the University of Texas, Dallas (Chemistry, Synthetic Metals, 2000); Dr. Michael Brown, UTSW Medical Center (Medicine, 1985); Dr. Alfred Gilman, UTSW Medical Center, (Medicine, 1994); Dr. Russell Hulse, UT Dallas (Physics, 1993); Dr. Ferid Murad, UT Medical School, Houston (Medicine, 1998).
Our Mission: The Texas Nanotechnology Initiative is dedicated to establishing Texas as a world leader in the discovery, development, and commercialization of nanotechnology. We have organized a consortium of Texas-based universities, industry leaders, investors, and government officials in order to foster communication, collaboration, and the sharing of resources to accelerate the realization of our goal.
Why Nanotechnology? Why Now?
The history of civilization and industry revolves around man’s ability to understand and manipulate the physical world. As the ability to see and use a smaller and smaller scale of matter has progressed, the number of potential and practical uses of inert and organic material has multiplied. As an example, every product of the electronics industry is a result of the historically recent ability to manufacture at the micron (one millionth of a meter) scale. The techniques which allow reliable, economic production of products and materials at the nanometer (one billionth of a meter) are being developed right now. It is vital to Texas’ future wellbeing that, as a state, we gain and retain the intellectual and industrial resources necessary to maintain leadership and ownership of a broad base of the industry which will shape the 21st century. If we lag or delay, we will wind up working for the leaders, instead of with them.
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Pres. Texas Nanotechnology Initiative
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