WEST LAFAYETTE, IN - Purdue University researchers have received a five-year $14.5 million National Science Foundation grant to expand the widely used nanoHUB.org online science and engineering gateway.
The Purdue-led Cyber Platform, a part of the Network for Computational Nanotechnology (NCN), will assist researchers across the globe by developing a virtual society that shares simulation software, data and other innovative content to provide engineers and scientists with the fundamental knowledge required to advance nanoscience into nanotechnology.
Annually, nearly 250,000 users in 172 countries participate in nanoHUB, an online meeting place for simulation, research, collaboration, teaching, learning and publishing. The nanoHUB provides a library of 267 simulation tools, free from the limitations of running software locally, used in the scientific computing cloud by more than 12,000 people every year.
The Internet-based initiative provides 3,000 resources from more than 1,000 authors for research and education in the areas of nanoelectronics and nanoelectromechanical systems and their application to nano-biosystems. The nanoHUB menu also includes courses, tutorials, seminars, discussions and facilities to foster nano-research collaboration, including the Birck Nanotechnology Center in Purdue's Discovery Park.
The nanoHUB has become the first broadly successful, cloud-computing environment for research across multiple disciplines, with more than 960 citations in scientific literature and 8,000 secondary citations, with nearly one-third of those papers involving experimental data. It also has evolved well beyond online simulation for research.
NCN founding director Mark Lundstrom, the Don and Carol Scifres Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Purdue, said a key part of the Cyber Platform project is to engage an ever-larger and more diverse cyber community that shares novel, high-quality nanoscale computation and simulation research and educational resources.
Based in Discovery Park, Purdue's primary interdisciplinary research complex, the Cyber Platform team hopes to accelerate the transformation of nanoscience to nanotechnology through the integration of simulation with experimental data.
Lundstrom said the project will focus on developing open-source software to stimulate data sharing and inspire and educate the next-generation workforce. A key goal is to create communities in the nano-related areas of manufacturing, informatics, and environmental health and safety.