The National Science Foundation projects a global demand of two million nanotechnologists and six million support personnel by 2015. At present there are only 100,000 nanotech employees in the global workforce, which provides a challenging workforce gap to nano-based companies moving from R&D to commercialization.
It is not surprising that nanotechnology courses are becoming an important part of the curriculum for a number of forward-thinking educators. Forsyth Technical Community College have recently purchased the qNano as a tool for teaching students about nanotechnology. The ability to detect, count, and characterize nanoparticles – are key features making the instruments useful tools to learn about the physical properties of nanoparticles.
“We prepare graduates for multidisciplinary careers. We train them to be compatible with biologists, chemists, physicists, and engineers. Our graduates are then able to help incorporate nanotechnologies into startup and established companies in the region. We also teach economics alongside the sciences to help promote growth of the nanotechnology sector in the US.”
– Dr. Kevin Conley, Program Coordinator of Nanotechnology Education, Forsyth Tech
According to Dr. Kevin Conley Conley, single-particle event counting will be the way forward for the nanotechnology industry. “The industry-standard particle-sizing method is DLS (Dynamic Light Scattering). This method reports averages over thousands of particle events. The qNano reports precise data for single events. In the long run, the simpler, more elegant method always wins.”
Forsyth Tech will further build the skills of students through collaborations and exchanges with other education institutes such as the University of Victoria in Wellington, New Zealand. Forsyth Tech received a special All-Blacks edition 100th Instrument that was presented to commemorate the occasion (picture above).