About NanoFabNet

Mission Statement

An international hub for sustainable industrial-scale nanofabrication.

NanoFabNet is an international hub for sustainable nanofabrication whose structure, business model, detailed strategies and action plans are designed, agreed and carried by its partners. NanoFabNet’s upcoming virtual collaboration space, NanoFabNet Hub, will be a self-sustained platform that aids international stakeholders in accessing expert knowledge about ethical, safe, and sustainable nanofabrication.

The NanoFabNet Hub

The NanoFabNet Hub will be the product of two years’ collaborative work efforts from several European and international partners. It will be the virtual platform that will be hosted on NanoFabNet’s website and serve as an important tool for nanotechnology professionals and entities.

The NanoFabNet Hub stands for:

  • a well-implemented, guided approach to high levels of safety and sustainability,
  • trusted technical reliability and quality, and
  • compliance with and drive of harmonisation, standardisation, and regulation requirements, amongst all of its members and along their nanofabrication value chains.

The hub will contain an open structure, whose elements have been developed, agreed and validated in a stakeholder-driven approach. A registered NanoFabNet secretariat at its centre will provide an accountable, approachable executive that secures its economic sustainability.

The NanoFabNet Hub will be a one-stop-shop for all matters and concerns pertaining to sustainable nanofabrication and its successful incorporation into the complex, large-scale high-value industries by bringing together governmental and academic laboratories with large industries and SMEs, and thereby offering a coordination space for past, current and future collaborative nanofabrication projects (incl. both EU-funded projects and initiatives, as well as public-to-public partnerships (P2Ps) and public-private-partnerships (PPPs)).

It will be responsible for the implementation of a long-term business plan and the provision of validation services, trainings and consultations, while collaborative and cooperative activities between actors of the wider international nanofabrication community, will be fostered within the open architecture of the hub and may be supported by membership organisation, if necessary.

The official online launch of the NanoFabNet Hub will occur in 2021.

Want to help shape the hub? Then complete our value proposition survey here

Challenges

Within the realm of nanofabrication, several major challenges exist that are inhibiting progress in this field:

  1. Governmental and academic laboratories tend to have little interaction with large-scale and small-scale industries, other than offering consultancy services.
  2. Sub-disciplines of nanoscience differ in origin, the challenges they address, the media in which they work, the skills they require, and the value-chains in which they operate, resulting in fragmentation of the field through conflicting schools-of-thought.
  3. Geopolitical clustering prevails: Nanofabrication laboratories tend to cluster on the national or federal level, due to factors connected to their immediate economic, political and geographic infrastructures and those of their client industries.
  4. Standards and regulations for sustainability in nanotech in terms of human health, ethics, environment, life-cycle analysis are disjointed; research and new standards for functional nanoparticles, nanomaterials, components, devices and processes requires a common approaches for nomenclature, metrology, measurements and characterisation.

NanoFabNet partners will rise to the challenge to address these issues in the following ways:

  1. The engagement and consultation of the wide variety of identified stakeholders at the first hour of NanoFabNet’s creation, will counteract the tendency of stakeholders to only cluster into their familiar networks.
  2. An organisational, or business model innovation, will be incorporated into the simultaneous creation of the NanoFabNet membership organisation and the wider NanoFabNet Hub. In this way, the stakeholder community will exchange it's opinions and views, and will co-collaborate in development workshops to contribute to the NanoFabNet business plan.
  3. The fragmentation into geopolitical clusters will be overcome through (a) the inclusion of two US partners, with each of them inputting into different core areas of NanoFabNet activities and (b) the selection of strategic Executive Advisory Board (EAB) members, who represent various stakeholder groups (incl. academia, large industries and SMEs in different sectors) and regions (incl. Israel, Japan, Switzerland, Netherlands, Portugal USA).
  4. To address sustainability issues, selected world-leading technology sustainability experts from different disciplines will aid partners in developing a NanoFabNet concept of ‘sustainable nanofabrication’

Are you a nanotechnology expert who would like to add your opinions and feedback to sector questions around validation, harmonisation and standardisation? Then take part in our survey here.

Impacts

NanoFabNet’s efforts are designed and carried out to maximise impact for nanotechnology stakeholders, while laying the foundation for a sustainable, community-owned hub to exist for years to come.

IMPACT 1

Integrate nanoscale building blocks into complex, large scale systems that will become the basis for a new European high-value industry.

NanoFabNet will increase the number of downstream clients and collaboration partners by at least 20% over two years. It will also demonstrate at least five use-cases on nanofabrication building blocks into downstream technologies, applying the concepts, implementation roadmaps and action plans developed with its partners.  

IMPACT 2

Link and consolidate existing infrastructure, create a sustainable community of stakeholders managing information and communication within and outside the group and develop an EU-wide research and innovation strategy.

To build its community, NanoFabNet anticipates its hub will have at least 200 confirmed subscriptions from various stakeholders (i.e. government and academic laboratories, large industries, SMEs, sustainability organisations, NGOs, govern. representatives). The group will also develop and publish five individual strategies, implementation roadmaps and/or action/development plans, which are combined into a single NanoFabNet 5-Years Strategy and an EU 2030 Strategic Plan for Nanofabrication.

IMPACT 3

Establish a network of existing EU-funded projects and initiatives, which will solve common issues through cross-project collaboration and will strengthen technology take-up across Europe.

Part of the NanoFabNet offerings include a listing of at least 100 past and current projects on the NanoFabNet database. It will also catalyse the establishment of at least 20 new cross-project collaborations, which can be traced back to their connection through the NanoFabNet community.

IMPACT 4

Establish international cooperation through the nanomanufacturing programme of USA-NSF and the NNI Signature Initiative of Sustainable Nanomanufacturing.

NanoFabNet aims to have at least 20 US-based nanofabrication stakeholders subscribed to the NanoFabNet Hub. The group aims to also provide invited representation from the NanoFabNet Hub to at least five nanofabrication-related events in the US, with at least one of those in collaboration with the NNI Signature Initiative of Sustainable Nanomanufacturing.

By far, one of the most impactful measures to eliminate barriers, will be the establishment of the NanoFabNet database: the database aims to act as a ‘digital twin’ of the NanoFabNet stakeholder community. The group’s dynamic ‘NanoFabNet Strategy & Implementation Roadmap on Infrastructures, Knowledge & Skills Development’* will also be an important guide and a central defining element of the NanoFabNet Hub.

Furthermore, NanoFabNet will created added value through the integration of nanofabrication into the wider sustainable, high-tech industries. Guided by the ‘NanoFabNet Strategy & Implementation Plan for Sustainability in Nanofabrication’ this high-impact strategy aims to identify concepts and benchmarks of sustainability that must be met by the nanofabrication stakeholders, as well as derive a list of novel, ‘soft’ indicators of sustainability that are ambitious and ‘exploratory’ in nature.