Nanotechnology and the All Blacks

Fibre imprinting nanotechnology developed at the MacDiarmid Institute of Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology at the University of Canterbury is going to get rugby fans closer than ever to the All Blacks. The names of as many as 100,000 fans are to be printed onto a single thread which will be sewn into the Silver Fern […]

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Nature Whispering Softly

  To win a Nobel prize “you’ve got to be curious, competitive, creative, stubborn, self confident, sceptical, patient but most of all you have to be lucky”. Yes, lucky. This was one of the Nobel Prize winning tips that James Storey shared with me between sips of mocha in the back of a London café a […]

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An Eye for Colour

  What´s your favourite colour? Blue? What kind of blue? Navy blue? Sky blue? Cyan? Dr Sally Brooker can answer that question without thinking – for her, it´s royal blue. It´s not just a matter of personal taste, as much of the chemistry professor´s current research is informed by careful discrimination of colour. So much […]

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From the Acting Director of the MacDiarmid Insitute

  In the 1st of July this year the MacDiarmid Institute turned six years old and this anniversary has made me look out for literary references from which we can seek inspiration or guidance. As someone with a young family at home my attention was drawn to A.A. Milne, who published a whole volume of […]

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Hot off the press …

  Prof Pablo Etchegoin, Principal Investigator in the MacDiarmid Institute, and his group have recently had three cover articles in highly prestigious journals. PCCP, June 2007, PSS in June 2008 and PCCP in July 2008. The work in PCCP relates to single molecule isolation detection in surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy and the work in PSSb […]

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Mathematics for VIPs

  Howard Lukefahr and John Hannah ran the fifth series of VIP science classes in June, this time on mathematics. The “by invitation only” classes are a joint venture with the Royal Society of New Zealand. Star pupils, who also have excellent attendance records, include portrait painter Marianne Muggeridge, Radio New Zealand National presenter Kim Hill, […]

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Professor Paul Callaghan has left the building

  Mike Bodnar put the Director of the MacDiarmid Institute under the microscope on his last day, to focus on some of his personal discoveries of the past six years… Paul Callaghan’s appointment as Director coincided with the establishment of the contestable fund for Centres of Research Excellence, COREs. One of his first challenges, therefore, […]

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Eyes Wide Open in Japan

  Jade Mackay (PhD student, VUW), David Mackenzie (PhD student, UoC) and I (Post-doc, VUW), were selected as MacDiarmid young researchers to represent New Zealand at the inaugural ANF Nanotech Camp in Japan in February 2008. We spent 3 weeks at the workshop in Japan in the company of 33 other young researchers from 13 […]

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The HOPE Meeting in Japan

  The HOPE meeting is a new venture funded by the Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS). The aim of the meeting is to bring together young scientists from the Pacific rim to meet with leading scientific figures from Japan and worldwide, and to provide an opportunity for the future scientists to build networks. This […]

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Cooking Up Semi-conductors

  What do you do when you make a cake and it turns out differently every time – moist and dense one day, light and fluffy the next? And to add a further complication, the ingredients sometimes eat away at the cake tin…. That´s the sort of problem Associate Professor Steve Durbin faces in cooking […]

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Kate and Conrad’s foray into grazing and reflection with Mike and Bridget

  While AMN-3 clearly had other impacts on me, the conference had major benefits in terms of advancing one particular area of my research. I was extraordinarily fortunate to have in the audience during the talk I was giving focused on the work of Conrad Lendrum, one of my past PhD students, Michael Toney. Mike hails from […]

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And now for something completely different – ?

  The MacDiarmid Institute has completely changed my retirement — a carefully planned withdrawal from research. Among other things it introduced me to a professor from Lausanne who attended AMN-2 in Queenstown. That chance meeting, and a discussion we had about some Raman data I had on a complex ferroelectric, Cd pyroniobate, resulted in an […]

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To Create Something Useful

  In 1953 the first transistor computer came into operation. It contained around 200 transistors and covered the whole wall of a room. Nowadays, if you rip open your new cell phone you’ll find a chip around a sixth of the size of your little fingernail with half a billion transistors etched on its surface […]

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MacDiarmid Symposium

  The second Alan MacDiarmid Symposium on Organic Conductors was held at Victoria University on the 14th of April to coincide with Alan MacDiarmid’s birthday.  The symposium was jointly organised by the ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science (Wollongong, Australia) and The MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology, and was a chance for young […]

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