On the sidelines of the first International Workshop on Engineering and Applications of Nanocarbon, held between Jan. 31 – Feb 2, 2015, the collaboration between Shandong University and Rice Universities was celebrated.
This celebration revolved around the opening of the Joint Center for Carbon Nanomaterials and this was the first dedication at the event. This celebration was organized in the presence of eminent scientists from both the universities.
The team present there included Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou, Rice faculty members of the university’s Department of Materials Science and Nano Engineering along with Rice alumnus Lijie Ci, director of the new center and a professor from the same faculty representing Shandong University.
This new center brings together research and applications in nanosciences, with a focus on achieving excellence in this space.
This partnership between the two universities is also an initiative towards building long-term partnerships between leading institutions across the globe on important fields like nanoscience and engineering.
This initiative will focus on generating research that has the potential for commercialization in the area of carbon nanoscience, including important areas like grapheme and nanotubes.
This initiative is spearheaded by two of the most well known individuals who have contributed to the growth and advancement of this field and discipline. It was in 2007 that both, Ajayan and Ci, started their collaboration at Rice with Ajayan being faculty and Ci, a postdoctoral researcher.
They have been lauded for their significant contributions towards the introduction of the darkest material ever measured in 2008, finding a mention in the prestigious Guinness Book of World Records.
Some of their noteworthy collaboration includes working together on the first two-dimensional material to incorporate graphene and hexagonal boron nitride in a seamless lattice, which set the tone for advanced worldwide research in relation to electronic components.
Currently, they are the chair of Rice University’s Department of Materials Science and NanoEngineering and Director of the new center respectively.
“We look forward to the expansion of knowledge and learning opportunities being offered to those students who are keen to create inroads in the exciting and futuristic areas of nanosciences. We are honored and positive about the possibilities that can emerge from this unique and progressive collaboration,” commented the Rice University’s official spokesperson. He further added, “We also see this as a step towards building closer ties with Chinese universities to facilitate knowledge sharing.”
“This is definitely the right step in a very exciting direction wherein this initiative will augment the knowledge sharing and the advancement of research in this field,” commented the official representative from Shandong University.
According to Ajayan, “I look forward to the combined possibilities between those studying this area across both universities as the future in applied research in these subjects has worldwide potential and relevance, which this new center will try to imbibe and focus on.”
Reaction from some of the individuals planning on working on research at this new center had this to add:
“It’s a great idea and initiative to create a facility to promote the very relevant field of nontechnology studies,” commented Kung.
“I am sure that we , the students will get a tremendous learning opportunity by being part of the new initiative which has such expert scientists at the helm,” shared Cohen.