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About INE

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Our vision is to establish an Institute which is a nationally and internationally recognized leader in nanoscience composite applications.


The primary goal of INE is to develop breakthrough technologies in energy storage and generation (solar and wind) by developing organic based nano-photonic, nano-phononic and nanomechanical composites that are manufactured by means of sophisticated material control mechanisms.

This is achieved through the use of a variety of techniques including electron and optical microscopy, spectroscopy, nanofabrication and self-assembly.  The ability to design, assemble and engineer nanostructures will rely predominately on understanding and controlling the interactions between the nanostructures (materials on a molecular level).

To achieve this, the program will advance a multi-scale work schedule focused on material self-assembly and characterization capabilities and expertise.

Key components of our program:

  • Morphological analysis of the mesoscale interfacial interactions using proximal probe methodologies
  • Controlled and designed functionalization of carbon nanostructures
  • Modification of polymers, epoxies and resins through new self assembly techniques
  • Understanding of interfacial interactions to design and fabricate multicomponent nanocomposites
  • Develop a fundamental understanding of the metrics that control the underlying principles of functionalization and the relationship to self-assembly


  1. To maintain a set of core facilities, support staff, equipment, software and techniques that can be used in nano technology research and technology development projects which are designed to address the goals of the Institute.
  2. The Institute is a cross-campus collaboration effort that looks to the specific skill sets required rather than departmental or college lines in order to build critical mass. To facilitate the development of synergistic relationships among faculty from each of the following UH colleges, the College of Natural Science and Mathematics and the College of Engineering. Such relationships will also extend to regional industrial partners interested in working towards furthering the goals of the Institute.
  3. To sustain all Institute operations and activities through external funding obtained from federal, state, and private sources interested in supporting the research, technology development, and student training goals of the center.
  4. To perform experimental and theoretical research studies designed to obtain results that address the goals of the Institute, to present results from those studies at national and international scientific or technical meetings, and to publish those results in high impact peer-reviewed scientific or technical journals.
  5. To develop new technologies relevant to achieving the goals of the center, and, when appropriate, to patent and commercialize those technologies.
  6. To maintain a steady throughput of undergraduate student researchers.
  7. To attract and train top-quality graduate students and post-doctoral fellows, and to place them in top-tier university, government, and industrial laboratories around the world after their training is complete.
  8. To hire tenure and/or tenure-track faculty members. INE will also include research faculty who can provide material and technical assistance to the growth of the Institute.