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Yorkshire Forward

Yorkshire Science and Technology Network (YSTN) Science Showcase event focused on nanotechnology, which involves the manipulation of materials at the molecular scale

Applications for nanotechnology are varied, from doubling the lifespan of the humble tennis ball and increasing the feel and control of tennis rackets - great for Wimbledon fans, to self cleaning cars -great for lazy Sunday mornings.

Professor Richard Williams, vice chancellor for enterprise, knowledge transfer and international strategy at the University of Leeds, and director of the Nanofactory, explained how nanobusiness is impacting on a global scale, opening up debate on the implications for future innovation.

Highlighting regional success stories such as Chamelic's self-cleaning cars, Williams commented on how Yorkshire and Humber has positioned itself to play a leading role in the international market for Nanotechnology, and the speed and effectiveness of global innovations..

The theme continued when Professor Tony Ryan, the ICI professor of physical chemistry and director of the Polymer Centre at the University of Sheffield outlined the future for nanotechnology, how science is changing as a consequence, and what effect this will have on business over the next 10-15 years.

Jim Farmery, head of innovation for Yorkshire Forward said: "Nanotechnology is not just for high level science based companies, the technology can be applied across the board, providing companies both small and large with an opportunity to develop innovative new products".

A glimpse into the future showed that possible uses for nanotechnology include:.

Miniaturised data storage systems capable of storing a complete library of information.

PCs with the power of today's computer centres.

Replacements for human tissues and organs.

Light plastic windows with hard transparent protective layers.

The Yorkshire Science and Technology Network helps to foster links between regional businesses and the regional academic community.

Since its launch, over 220 individual companies have taken advantage of this opportunity, helping to shape one of the most successful technology transfer networks.

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