A new contact point for start-ups, SMEs and industry pools the scientific and regulatory expertise in the field of nanotechnology available in Switzerland. contactpointnano.ch builds a bridge between research and innovative application.
Switzerland occupies a leading position internationally in the field of nanoresearch. But when it comes to translating existing knowledge into practice and fully exploiting the application potential of synthetic nanomaterials, companies face numerous questions – from the characterisation of new materials and their safe handling to the continuous development of national and international regulations. Today they have to gather the answers in many different places. Here contactpointnano.ch closes a gap.
Pooling the expertise
contactpointnano.ch will be managed during a two-year pilot phase by Peter Wick, who heads the research department Particles-Biology Interactions at Empa. It will pool and classify the scientific, industrial and regulatory expertise available in Switzerland and make it available to companies as needed. The portal itself will neither conduct safety assessments nor carry out measurements. Instead, it will provide companies with contact to appropriate experts, organise trainings and act as a platform for the exchange of information. It is supported by an expert council led by Barbara Rothen-Rutishauser and Alke Fink from the Adolphe-Merkle Institute of the University of Freiburg.
contactpointnano.ch was officially launched last week at the Swiss NanoConvention 2018 at ETH Zurich. The initiative to promote sustainable innovation was launched in the context of Swiss nanoresearch and in particular the Swiss National Research Programme “Opportunities and Risks of Nanomaterials” (NRP64) of the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) and the Nanotechnology Action Plan and is supported by the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SER), the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) and the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN).