The Helen and Martin Kimmel Center for Nanoscale Science

Reshef Tenne, Director
The Drake Family Professorial Chair in Nanotechnology

Objectives: The objectives of the Helen and Martin Kimmel center for Nanoscale Science is to encourage research in this burgeoning scientific discipline in general, and to help establish the links between molecular biology and nanoscale science, in particular; Another objective of the center is to promote education of young researchers who will be the future generation scientists in this field.

Means: To achieve these goals, the center supports the Helen and Martin Kimmel Nanoscale Laboratories (NL) in the basement of the Perlman building, which include clean rooms; molecular biology laboratories, and auxiliary laboratories for the characterization and manipulation of nanomaterials. It further supports laboratories engaged in nanomaterials synthesis and their characterization, and the activity in computations of nanomaterials. During this first year of operation, the NL have been completed and its scientific and technical staff has been established. The JEOL 6400 scanning electron microscope (SEM) was moved to the NL and an electron beam lithography system was installed on it.

Highlights of the scientific activities during this year: The mechanical properties of individual WS2 nanotubes were further investigated. This work suggests numerous applications for such nanotubes, especially in high strength nanocomposites (R. Tenne). Cell-free genetic circuit elements were constructed in a transcription-translation extract. For this purpose transcriptional activation and repression cascades were engineered, in which the protein product of each stage is the input required to drive or block the following stage (R. Bar-Ziv). A new microfluidic-based 1D solid made of an array of water droplets in oil with attenuated sound velocity was discovered and physically characterized (R. Bar-Ziv). A new carbon nanotube based nanoelectromechanical device was fabricated and its quantum mechanical current oscillations measured (E. Joselevich).