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Press Release for Tuesday, September 15, 2015

UNF Professors Awarded NSF Grant for Nanomanufacturing Research

Media Contact: Andrea Mestdagh, Specialist

Department of Public Relations  
(904) 620-2192 

Researchers in the departments of Chemistry and Physics at the University of North Florida were recently awarded a three-year research grant totaling $250,000 by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to develop new nanomanufacturing techniques for the electronics and communications industries.


Facilities required to generate complex nanostructures routinely cost billions of dollars. Motivation for this research stems from the observation that traditional patterning techniques for making integrated circuits for small electrical devices have steadily increased in cost and complexity.


With this funding, Dr. Thomas J. Mullen, UNF assistant professor of chemistry, Dr. Corey P. Causey, UNF assistant professor of chemistry, and Dr. Daniel F. Santavicca, UNF assistant professor of physics, will collaborate to develop a nanoscale, or minute, form of lithography that will complement the traditional approach by allowing better precision and resolution, resulting in more powerful and compact electronics.


“While UNF has committed substantial resources to enable research efforts by faculty members, this grant represents an opportunity to establish the University as a place where impactful and meaningful research is being performed,” said Mullen. “The research assists with preparing our students for their future endeavors all the while making meaningful contributions to the scientific community.”


Undergraduate research students will assist with the project, providing them additional involvement with experimental techniques, ranging from organic synthesis to fabrication, and will allow them to see a project from development to conception.

The area of nanoscience research is an emerging strength at the University. In addition to this grant, the Department of Physics, in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, were recently awarded a three-year NSF research grant totaling nearly $500,000 to advance research in the fields of nanotechnology and nanoscience. UNF has also received three other NSF grants in the last year.

The mission of the Department of Chemistry is to provide excellent educational experiences to foster a solid background in the foundational aspects of chemistry, an understanding of the scientific methods of inquiry, and an appreciation of the significance and relevance of chemistry in daily life. 


The mission of the Department of Physics is to provide excellent educational experiences in physics, astronomy and geological science, as well as to advance knowledge in physics through research and service to the University, public and our profession.


UNF, a nationally ranked university located on an environmentally beautiful campus, offers students who are dedicated to enriching the lives of others the opportunity to build their own futures through a well-rounded education.