Skip Navigation
  • UC Riverside
  • University Advancement
  • Strategic Communications

Nanotechnology to Get Bigger at UC Riverside With Two Symbolic Events

News Media Contact:
  Name: Iqbal Pittalwala
  Phone: (951) 827-6050

Nanotechnology to Get Bigger at UC Riverside With Two Symbolic Events
Symposium honors Robert Haddon; groundbreaking ceremony marks start of construction for building devoted to nanotechnology research
(January 4, 2008)

Print Quality Image: Right click image and select "Save Target As." Rendering of Materials Science and Engineering Building. Rendering of Materials Science and Engineering Building.
RIVERSIDE, Calif. — Two events at the University of California, Riverside on Thursday, Jan. 10, will signal a new milestone in the university’s growing interdisciplinary excellence.

First, scientists and engineers from around the world will meet for a symposium from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. in honor of UCR Professor Robert Haddon, renowned authority in nanotechnology, and winner of the 2008 James C. McGroddy Prize for New Materials from the American Physical Society (APS).

Next, at 4 p.m., the university will celebrate the groundbreaking of its new Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) Building at a ceremony on the Bookstore Courtyard just west of Bourns Hall, with a view overlooking the construction site across North Campus Drive. The ceremony will be led by Reza Abbaschian, dean of the Bourns College of Engineering, and Donald A. Cooksey, interim dean of the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences.

The ceremony opens the $53 million project to complete by 2010 the first major building at UCR devoted to nanotechnology research. Haddon will speak on nanotechnology, followed by remarks from Congressmen Jerry Lewis and Ken Calvert. Also offering comments will be Robert D. Grey, UC Riverside acting chancellor; Alexander Balandin, materials science and engineering program director; and Jerome Schultz, distinguished professor and chair of bioengineering. A reception will follow at the adjacent Bourns Hall Courtyard.

(Media note: There will be a groundbreaking photo opportunity at 3:45 p.m. on the actual construction site. The public is not encouraged to participate due to potential safety hazards.)

Thursday’s symposium will be held in Engineering Building II, Room 205 beginning at 9 a.m. Registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. Speakers include Haddon; Walt deHeer, Georgia Tech; Roland Kawakami, UCR-Physics; Sakhrat Khizorev, UCR-Electrical Engineering; Ashok Mulchandani, UCR-Chemical and Environmental Engineering; Richard Oakley, University of Waterloo, Canada; Thomas Palstra, University of Groningen, Holland; Christopher Reed, UCR-Chemistry; and Chandra Varma, UCR-Physics.

Nanotechnology is “the final frontier in miniaturization, at least on the surface of the planet,” according to Haddon, distinguished professor of chemical and environmental engineering and director of UCR’s Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering. Nanotechnology offers a broad range of advances in science unheard of a few short years ago, and the Materials Science and Engineering Building will be the home of nanotechnology research on the UC Riverside campus.

“Nanotechnology is not confined to a particular field,” Haddon added. “It encompasses all of the scientific disciplines including chemistry, engineering, physics, biology, computers and medicine. Thus, nanotechnology serves as a vehicle to create teams of scientists and engineers around a particular problem rather than focusing on what can be accomplished within a particular discipline. This comes about because the focus in nanotechnology is on the basic building blocks of matter — atoms and molecules — and at that level all of the disciplines have a common starting point.”

Haddon’s McGroddy Prize, awarded for outstanding achievement in the science and application of new materials, is endowed by IBM. He was recognized by APS “for the discovery of high-temperature superconductivity in non-oxide systems.” He will receive the prize at the APS annual meeting March 10-14, in New Orleans, where he also will present an invited lecture.

Designed to foster interdisciplinary research among faculty from the Bourns College of Engineering and the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, the Materials Science and Engineering Building represents a new model of scientific exploration at UC Riverside that crosses traditional college boundaries. It will provide nearly 77,000 assignable square feet to accommodate the interdisciplinary instructional and research needs of the colleges’ joint programs in nanotechnology, materials science and bioengineering.

For more information on the symposium and the groundbreaking ceremony, please contact Carol Lerner at 951-827-5089 or Because of space limitations, RSVPs are required for the symposium; members of the public interested in attending it are asked to contact Lerner.

Materials Science Symposium program:

Engineering Building II, Room 205

8:30 a.m.
Registration / Continental Breakfast

9:00 a.m.

Jory Yarmoff, Professor of Physics, and Divisional Dean, UCR College of Natural & Agricultural Sciences

Harry Tom, Professor of Physics, and Chair, UCR Department of Physics and Astronomy

9:20 a.m.
Richard T. Oakley, Department of Chemistry, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, “Heavy-Atom Radicals as Building Blocks for Conductive and Magnetic Materials”

9:55 a.m.
Christopher A. Reed — Department of Chemistry, University of California, Riverside, “Venturing into Materials Science”

10:30 a.m.
Sakhrat Khizroev — Department of Electrical Engineering, University of California, Riverside, “Nanomagnetic Single-Chip Computing”

11:05 a.m.
Coffee Break

11:25 a.m.
Thomas T.M. Palstra — Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials, University of Groningen, The Netherlands, “A Random Walk Through Molecular Organics”

Ashok Mulchandani — Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Riverside, “One-Dimensional Nanostructure-Based (Bio) Analytical Devices”

12:35 p.m.

1:35 p.m.
Chandra Varma — Distinguished Professor, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of California, Riverside, “High Temperature Superconductivity in Fullerenes and Elsewhere”

2:10 p.m.
Walter A. de Heer — School of Physics, Georgia Institute of Technology, “Epitaxial graphene: a new paradigm for nanoelectronics”

2:45 p.m.
Roland Kawakami — Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of California, Riverside, “Spin-Polarized Transport in Carbon Nanotubes and Graphene”

3:20 p.m.
Robert C. Haddon — Distinguished Professor and Director, Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering, University of California, Riverside, “Superconductivity in C60”

4:00 p.m.
Materials Science & Engineering Building Groundbreaking Ceremony and Reception —Bourns Hall Courtyard

Related Links:
  • More about Robert Haddon
  • More about the McGroddy Prize
  • About the Materials Science and Engineering Bldg.
  • College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences
  • Bourns College of Engineering
  • Additional Contacts:
  • Jim Dexter, dir. of communications, Bourns College of Engin.
  • The University of California, Riverside is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment of about 17,000 is projected to grow to 21,000 students by 2010. The campus is planning a medical school and already has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Graduate Center. With an annual statewide economic impact of nearly $1 billion, UCR is actively shaping the region's future. To learn more, visit or call (951) UCR-NEWS.