PORTLAND - A diverse group of people interested in the evolving growth of nanoscience and microtechnology, from private industry, academia, the military and government agencies, will participate in the Micro Nano Breakthrough Conference 2004 on July 28-29 at the Sheraton Portland Airport.

Registration for the event is now open. More information on speakers, fees, the conference agenda and other details can be obtained on the web at http://www.pnl.gov/microproducts/conferences.

The event is designed for scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, business administrators, product development managers, government officials and policy makers, students, technology transfer specialists, investors, legislators and a wide range of other professionals interested in the dramatic growth of nano- and microtechnology as a science, business and area of economic opportunity.

The conference is sponsored by the Microproducts Breakthrough Institute, a collaboration of Oregon State University and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory aimed at commercializing nano- and microtechnologies into new products and companies.

"We hope a wide range of technology developers, academic researchers, business and government leaders will attend the conference to learn more about the exciting progress being made with these technologies, and the opportunities they hold to create new products and spur economic growth," said Kevin Drost, a professor of mechanical engineering at OSU and co-director of the Microproducts Breakthrough Institute. "This will be an excellent opportunity to share ideas, build networks and set our agendas for the future."

The conference will include such topics as:

  • Federal government need for microproducts
  • Miniaturization of medical devices for the health care industry
  • Micro-climate control in the defense and other industries
  • Micro-power and hydrogen generation
  • Chip cooling in the electronics industry
  • Small business and venture capital for microproducts

Many academic, industry and political leaders believe that Oregon is ideally positioned to become a national leader in nano- and microtechnology. Oregon recently opened its first signature research center, the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute, made possible with support from the Oregon legislature and private industry.

And many leaders say the state should be a strong competitor for one of the new national nanotechnology research centers authorized by the 21st Century Nanotechnology Research and Development Act, which was co-sponsored by Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden.