Mechanical Magic – Nature’s ‘Smart’ Materials

  From plants growing and flowering, to animals breathing and moving around, to DNA unwinding as it gets transcribed and copied, nature is a beehive of constant mechanical action. Many of the activities that occur in the natural world simply do not seem possible in things that are not alive – take fruit ripening, for […]

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Following Their Dreams

  The MacDiarmid Institute is a major sponsor of the Te Ropu Awhina Putaiao mentors who have played a critical role since 2000 in increasing the numbers of Maori and Pacific pupils from local, low decile secondary schools undertaking science and technology degrees. Cassidy Moeke and Tammy Kaiwai were keen to speak about their experiences at Victoria […]

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Local Science – International Impacts – Superheating Nanoparticles

MacDiarmid Institute Principal Investigator and IRL scientist Shaun Hendy, along with his Victoria University of Wellington student Dmitri Schebarchov recently featured in a news story on PhysOrg.com, a major international website dedicated to the latest developments in physical sciences. The story relates to their article published by Physical Review Letters on 26th June 2006, entitled “Superheating and Solid-Liquid […]

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Local Science – International Impacts – Single Molecules

Eric Le Ru, Matthias Meyer, and Pablo Etchegoin from the MacDiarmid Institute at Victoria University have developed a method of detecting and tracking single molecules using Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS). SERS is being developed now as a possible technique to monitor extremely small quantities of molecules. Possible applications could be: revealing the presence of performance enhancing drugs, tracing illegal […]

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Local Science – International Impacts – Quantum Dots

Dr Richard Tilley from the MacDiarmid Institute at Victoria University has received a grant of $1.2m from the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology through their International Investment Opportunities Fund. Other key collaborators are Professor Kenji Yamamato of the International Medical Centre of Japan, Dr Thomas Bäckström from the Malaghan Institute of Medical Research and Institute principal investigator Dr Shaun Hendy The work will enable researchers to develop new ways […]

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Neville Jordan joins the MacDiarmid Board

  Neville Jordan CNZM, a member of the New Zealand Hi Tech Hall of Fame, has joined the Board of The MacDiarmid Institute. Mr Jordan completed an engineering degree at the University of Canterbury and went on to establish a highly successful international technology company, MAS Technology, a business designing and manufacturing telecommunications microwave equipment. The company grew from […]

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A Dance of Chance and Purpose

  Who can dictate the onslaught of chance as it batters, lifts, dumps and clings around us? Many drown in the swell, others manage to bob around in the waves but real masters find a spot to plant their feet and as life pours towards them, they throw it out again, fashioning the torrents of […]

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International workshop strengthens and expands collaboration

  Thanks to generous two year funding from the inaugural France/New Zealand Dumont d’Urville Science and Technology support programme, a successful workshop has been held at the Universite de Provence over the week of 26th to 29th June. The workshop brought together four MacDiarmid Institute PIs (Joe Trodahl, Tony Bittar, Grant Williams and Ben Ruck) and a student from the Wellington group (Simon Granville) and fi fteen […]

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A Bit of an Edge in Quantum Dots

  In another life, Richard Tilley could have been a painter. One of the things that motivates him most in his work with nanoparticles is the colourful chemistry and visualising the shapes and arrangement of atoms under the electron microscope. Now, as a chemistry lecturer at Victoria University and a Principal Investigator with the MacDiarmid Institute he enjoys both designing new brightly glowing “quantum dots” […]

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A Meeting of Science and Literature

One of the more unusual projects that the MacDiarmid Institute has supported has been the “Sci-Arts” collaboration “Are Angels OK?”. Emerging from the 2005 International Year of Physics, and led by Poet Bill Manhire and Physicist Paul Callaghan, a number of New Zealand physicists were paired with some of our best creative writers, including Margaret Mahy, […]

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The First International Meeting of Alan G. MacDiarmid Institutes held at Chonnam University, Gwangju, Korea, 10-12 April 2006

Institutes attending the meeting were: • The ARC Centre of Excellence for Materials Science, Intelligent Polymer Research Institute, University of Wollongong, Australia (represented by Dr Peter Innes); • The MacDiarmid Institute of Innovation and Business, Sao Carlos, Brazil (represented by Dr Luiz Mattoso from the Agriculture Instrumentation Research Center of Embrapa); • The MacDiarmid Laboratories for Polymer Research, Karnatak University, […]

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Paper, Wool and Paint … but not as we know it

  Imagine the following: inkjet printers that produce perfectly crisp, clean printed images on low cost paper; packaging that keeps its contents as cool or hot as required for long periods of time without electricity; walls that store heat from the sun during the day and release it at night; powder that soaks up phosphate from streams and recycles it as fertiliser; and clothing that can’t […]

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Ministerial Visit

The Minister of Tertiary Education, The Hon Dr Michael Cullen, visited the MacDiarmid Institute’s Wellington site on 22 June to learn more about its activities, and to visit a sample laboratory. Presentations were made from both Victoria University of Wellington and The University of Canterbury, via a video link, with both Vice Chancellors, Professors Pat Walsh and Roy Sharp speaking, along with the Chair, Ian Watson, the Director, […]

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Studying the MacDiarmid Institute as a New Organisation

  The MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology is one of seven Centres of Research Excellence (CoREs), established by the government in 2002. The aim of the CoRE fund was to bring together groups that had traditionally competed for funding, to encourage excellent research and collaboration. The MacDiarmid Institute is a partnership between six organisations: Victoria University (who hosts the Institute), […]

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