CRANN secures €5m in non-Exchequer funding

17 Oct 2011

CRANN, the SFI-funded nanoscience institute, has struck a new partnership with global materials player Ceram. As well as providing opportunities for locally-based businesses, CRANN and Ceram will be able to bid for large industrial research projects in Europe and around the world.

The collaboration with Ceram builds on CRANN’s successful and extensive collaborative research programme with industry, which has resulted to date in engagements with over 70 companies in Ireland and internationally.

Such success can be attributed to the availability of superior research facilities – CRANN’s Advanced Microscopy Laboratory – and the quality of its researchers and PhD students, many of whom are recruited by industry partners, such as Intel and Merck Millipore.

This success was recently recognised when Intel presented an award to CRANN, for the role its researchers have played in helping Intel to develop advanced technologies.

CRANN is also celebrating the first anniversary of the Advanced Microscopy Laboratory, jointly funded by the HEA and SFI. In the year since its launch, over 20 companies from the energy, medical devices, biopharma and aeronautical sectors among others, have become regular users of the facility.

In addition, 200 researchers from 8 academic institutions across Ireland have been trained across different microscopy instruments. Furthermore, CRANN researchers have been awarded through international competition, €5 million of non-exchequer funding, as a direct result of this infrastructure.

“Our new partnership with Ceram strengthens Ireland’s position as a leading research hub for companies and highlights our position as a global leader in the nanoscience research domain,” Dr Diarmuid O’Brien, executive director CRANN commented.

“It will support CRANN in ensuring our research delivers a return on investment to the local economy.

“Irish nanoscience has the potential to drive growth in key industries like medical devices, energy, pharmaceuticals and ICT and is responsible for enabling 10pc of Irish exports,” O’Brien said.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years