Asee peer logo

Mitigation Of Barriers To Commercialization Of Nanotechnology: An Overview Of Two Successful University Based Initiatives

Download Paper |


2008 Annual Conference & Exposition


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008



Conference Session

Intellectual Property and Entrepreneurship

Tagged Division

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation

Page Count


Page Numbers

13.898.1 - 13.898.14



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Harpal Dhillon Excelsior College

visit author page

Dr.Harpal Dhillon is currently the Dean of the School of Business and Technology at Excelsior College. In the past, he has taught graduate and undergraduate courses in Information Systems, Software Engineering, and Project Management at University of Maryland, Southwestern Oklahoma State University, and George Washington University. Dr.Dhillon worked as owner/senior executive in three systems engineering companies over a period of 20 years. His research interests are in the areas of Human-Computer Interaction, Quality Assurance, and Applications of IT in Telemedicine and Web-based Distance Learning. Dr.Dhillon is a member of the Executive Board of the NASA Oklahoma Space Grant Consortium.

visit author page


Salahuddin Qazi SUNY Institute of Technology

visit author page

Dr.Sala Qazi is a full Professor at the School of Information Systems and Engineering Technology, State University of New York Institute of Technology, Utica, New York.
Dr. Qazi teaches and conducts research in the areas of Fiber Optics, Optical and Wireless Communication, and Nanotechnology. He has participated as an Invited Speaker in several international conferences and workshops. Dr.Qazi is a recipient of many awards including, the William Goodell Award for Research Creativity at SUNYIT. He is a Senior Member of IEEE.

visit author page


Sohail Anwar Pennsylvania State University-Altoona College

visit author page

Dr.Sohail Anwar is currently serving as an Associate Professor of Engineering at Penn State University Altoona College. He is also serving as the Chair of the EET Advisory Faculty Committee for Excelsior College,New York. Since 1996, he has been an Invited Professor of Electrical Engineering at IUT Bethune, France. Dr.Anwar is also serving as the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Engineering Technology and as an Associate Editor of the Journal of Pennsylvania Academy of Science.

visit author page

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Mitigation of Barriers to Commercialization of Nanotechnology: An Overview of Two Successful University-Based Initiatives


Nanotechnology, being a platform technology, feeds its output into numerous industries, which use these inputs to improve their products. In this context, it would be appropriate to refer to BASF, whose slogan is “we do not create products, we make them better”. Consequently, any effort to commercialize this technology has to be supported by scientific and engineering research in conjunction with an innovative well-funded product development and marketing program involving all downstream industries that are going to utilize nanotechnology products. There is no doubt about the potential of nanotechnology to impact numerous facets of human life and society, and the incentive for expeditious commercialization of this technology is strong. However, considerations and factors, such as long time between nanotechnology research and development of commercial products, large capital investment needed for a viable commercial venture, and financial/operational risks associated with commercial applications of nanotechnology, have impeded rapid adoption of this technology in the commercial domain. Substantial government funding, and involvement of academic institutions and research laboratories, are viewed as an essential response to these barriers. It is critical for the U.S. nanotechnology industry to speed up the process of commercialization, if we are to maintain a competitive position in the global nanotechnology market. Two progressive institutions of higher learning, The Pennsylvania State University and The University at Albany in New York state, have made very significant contributions in the arena of nanotechnology commercialization. This has been accomplished through education/training programs for workforce development, and through partnerships with large and small industrial organizations for conducting R & D, and commercialization programs. In this presentation, the two leading consortia involving these universities, namely Albany Nanotech/ Tech Valley and Nanofab, are profiled as role models for other educational institutions seriously interested in nontechnology R & D and commercialization projects.

Nanotechnology Overview

The term “nonotechnology” covers processes associated with the creation and utilization of structures in the 1 nanometer (nm) to 100 nm range. Nanofabrication involves engineering at the atomic length scale. Engineering at this scale makes it feasible to create, atom by atom, fibers which are very small in diameter but extremely strong. In the health care domain, extremely minute probes can detect disease by examining individual strands of DNA. Nanofabrication makes it possible to manufacture capillary systems for providing nutrients to man-made replacement organs.

The nanofabrication process has been used for creation of new chemical and biological substance detectors, which incorporate structures holding molecules that change their

Dhillon, H., & Qazi, S., & Anwar, S. (2008, June), Mitigation Of Barriers To Commercialization Of Nanotechnology: An Overview Of Two Successful University Based Initiatives Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 10.18260/1-2--3910

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2008 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015