IBM to support Bulgarian nanotechnology centre and research
17 June 2009
IBM (NYSE:IBM) and the Bulgarian government have announced
co-operation in the area of nanoscience and a deal for IBM to support
the creation of what will be the first Bulgarian nanotechnology centre.
The co-operation between IBM and the Bulgarian government includes
enabling industry, universities and the Bulgarian Academy of Science to
work together in the emerging field of nanoscience. The government's
three-year program is aimed at creating different nanoproducts,
micromachines and microsystems.
In a separate commercial agreement, IBM technology and business
consultants will assist the Bulgarian government in establishing a new
nanotechnology research facility which will use state-of-the-art
equipment to explore and develop new innovations in nanoscience.
To enable the computing-intensive projects, the new laboratory will
draw on IBM's Blue Gene — the most powerful Bulgarian supercomputer,
owned by Bulgarian State Agency for Information Technology and
"Realising high-tech projects like this is key in the current
environment when it is important to not only focus on short-term
measures, but to also create the basis for future recovery," said Plamen
Oresharski, Minister of Finance, Republic of Bulgaria.
"We have a window of opportunity right now to transform industry to
become more technology intense. This will not happen automatically, but
requires dedicated effort, part of which is the current agreement with
"Today's agreement is a true step forward for Bulgaria and for its
partnership with the United States," said Nancy McEldowney, US
Ambassador to Bulgaria. "It positions Bulgaria as a leader in
innovation, opening up many new possibilities and extending the horizon
for both of our countries."
Once the centre is created, its Bulgarian government intends to
conduct applied research in the following areas:
- microfluidics and nanofluidics — to gain a better understanding
of cells and tissues and other biological specimens to support drug
toxicity testing and the development of new medicines;
- nanosystems for electronics and sensing — using nanoscale
sensors and actuators to support the development of point-of-care
diagnostics, environmental monitoring (such as atmospheric pollution
analysis) and security; and
- Nanomaterials — advanced virtual substrates for compound
semiconductors which could pave the way for future, nanoscale
"Bulgaria's important step into the world of nanoscience creates a
global opportunity for the country and the region," said Marcelo Lema,
General Manager, IBM Central and Eastern Europe. "IBM has been a leader
in nanoscale science for many years and our participation in this
project will support the accelerated success of the Bulgarian
Nanotechnology Center. We see this type of collaboration as an emerging
model for future industry-academic partnerships."
Due to be completed next year, the Bulgarian Nanotechnology Center
will occupy nearly 500 square meters of laboratory space and will
support researchers and engineers working in close collaboration with
"According to Lux Research, nanotechnology will impact $2.9 trillion
worth of products across the value chain by 2014," said Alex Rakov,
Country General Manager, IBM Bulgaria. "I am extremely proud that IBM
will help Bulgaria to be at the forefront of this trend and further
support its efforts to become a knowledge based economy."
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