MacDiarmid Institute

Nov
27

Editorial: Inspiring, Influencing, Initiating

Professor Kate McGrath, Director of The MacDiarmid Institute The stories captured in this edition of Interface abound with people who are making a difference. People who are willing to take a leap of faith, whether that be by moving half way around the world to join the MacDiarmid Institute in order to explore opportunities for […]

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Nov
27

OPINION: Taking the J out of JAFA

By MacDiarmid Institute Principal Investigator Geoff Willmott “The problem is the gap between us on the map, and there’s no easy way to reconcile it.” – ‘Wellington’ (The Mutton Birds) In a colonial outpost a handful of academics follow the lead of those based further south, struggling to promote an institute in the midst of […]

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The MacDiarmid Institute’s New Direction

  The MacDiarmid Institute was founded twelve years ago around a vision of doing science collaboratively. New Zealand may not have been as big or as well-resourced as other countries, but our size and culture of openness made it an ideal place to pull multidisciplinary groups together to tackle unique science challenges. Some of the […]

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Bridging The Gap

‘Big, brave ideas’ inspired by biology are helping New Zealand advance towards a science-based economy.  Professor Juliet Gerrard is leading the MacDiarmid Institute’s work on Functional Nanostructures. The Director of the Biomolecular Interaction Centre at Canterbury University, she says it provides a bridge between the physical sciences for which the Institute is known and biology […]

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Desi Ramoo – Innovation Agent

There are more than seventy MacDiarmid Institute researchers around the country, burrowing away at the frontiers of knowledge. Their fundamental research is uncovering secrets to bend the rules of modern life and shape our future. But when they are burrowing this deep, it can be easy to forget their reasons for starting in the first […]

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Brendan Darby – Power to the Students

“I’m from Ireland. You can tell by the accent,” says Brendan Darby, Chair of the MacDiarmid Emerging Scientists Association (MESA). “I got into physics because I wanted to work on spacecrafts,” Brendan says. “During my university internship I got to help a company develop thermal protection layers for spacecrafts. After that I worked for an […]

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The Inspiration of The Doctor

We can thank the Third Doctor for Simon Granville’s career choices. Simon always thought that he’d like to be a diplomat or a scientist —but watching Jon Pertwee play about with interesting gadgets and technology on Doctor Who swung his decision in science’s favour.  The exhaustive Wikipedia entry for the Third Doctor describes him as […]

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Profile: Pauline Calloch, PhD Student

MESA Chairperson Brendan Darby had a chat with a couple of students at different stages of their careers.  Meet PhD student Pauline Calloch Your area of expertise is refractories. Why did you decide to focus on refractories? When I went to engineering school in France I specialised in Industrial Ceramics. I studied most ceramics, cement, […]

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Energy For The Future

Work at the forefront of human understanding is possible when scientists across the country work together, says Keith Gordon. The University of Otago Professor of Chemistry is the MacDiarmid Institute’s Science Leader in the vital area of Materials for Energy Capture and Utilisation.  “There are a couple of things to think about with energy. First we […]

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Controlling their own destiny

The scientific legacy of Dr Bill Robinson is a new Institute at Victoria University Wellington bearing his name. The Robinson Research Institute is a newly-formed institute at Victoria which comprises the 25 scientists and engineers who previously formed the Superconductivity & Energy team at Callaghan Innovation (formerly IRL). This team has moved in its entirety from their previous employer to Victoria University […]

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Editorial: A place to live

  What a world we have created through The MacDiarmid Institute and yet there is so much more to come. This first Interface Issue of 2014 marks a new phase for us as an institute as we begin to embark on a number of new endeavours. During 2014 we are holding a public forum in […]

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Discovery Awards

The Discovery Awards scholarship opened me up to a whole new world of science and its real-life applications. When I applied I really didn’t know what to expect, but after some persistent persuasion by my lovely science teacher Amanda Gibbs, and some good old scientific curiosity, I sent in my form and was lucky enough to be accepted with nine […]

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A Place to Live

Presented by The MacDiarmid Institute and Victoria University of Wellington, in association with Wanganui District Council and the Royal Society of New Zealand. Delegates to the 2012 Transit of Venus Forum in Tolaga Bay and Gisborne, initiated by Sir Paul Callaghan, were strongly in favour of another Forum in a provincial centre to maintain the momentum. The choice of Whanganui as host city honours […]

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Kōrero with scientists

A scheme to make it possible for primary teachers to Kōrero  (converse) with scientists is being developed by The MacDiarmid Institute. In two-hour interactive workshops, teachers explore basic concepts (like magnets, light, acids and bases) with scientists as well as hearing about areas of specialist research. “Interacting with scientists is a rare experience for many teachers, but you see them getting […]

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Alumni: Cosmin Laslau – Evaluating energy ideas

When Cosmin Laslau was at school, nanotechnology was an up and coming area of science receiving large amounts of publicity. Being tremendously excited by the opportunities, as well as being young and impressionable, he started down the nanotechnology research path. His career has been a mix of study, research and commercialisation, skills he now uses as a Research Analyst at Lux […]

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Opinion: Time To Process

Dr Nicola Gaston teaches in the School of Chemical and Physical Sciences at VUW. Her research aims to improve our understanding of the functionality of materials. In particular she looks at the development and variation of physical properties as a function of size, from simple clusters of a few atoms, to large nanoparticles and bulk materials, using accurate quantum mechanical calculations and […]

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Alumni: Ojas Mahapatra – Photonic Innovations

Ojas Mahapatra is one of those enviable people who gets paid to do what he loves. In 2013, he became the CEO of Photonic Innovations, a spin-out company from the University of Otago which is commercialising gas detectors for industries where levels of potentially toxic gases need to be monitored. The technology was developed by Professor Andrew Wilson and uses […]

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Alumni: Jon Kitchen – Luminescence sensing

Dr Jon Kitchen is setting up a new lab at the University of Southampton. His research area—supramolecular materials chemistry—can be used to develop devices that test for compounds in a variety of situations, from a simple carbon monoxide test for inclusion in home smoke detectors to detecting chemical warfare agents or monitoring DNA activity. The basis of his research is synthesising […]

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New Faces: Tim Woodfield

Tim Woodfield works at the interface of disciplines. His research spans materials science, advanced materials, materials science, biological materials, biology, and includes the study of cells and tissues. This nexus of research areas came about through his underpinning interest in both how things work (manifesting as engineering) and the study of life and living organisms (biology). He pursued both these overarching interests, studying mechanical engineering at […]

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New Faces: Kevin Smith

Kevin Smith, newly arrived Head of the School of Chemical Sciences at the University of Auckland and Associate Investigator of The MacDiarmid Institute has hit the ground running since arriving in the country in January. He’s been doing the usual relocation stuff, dealing with the construction noise as the iconic Science Centre building on the corner of Wellesley and Symonds Streets is rebuilt, along […]

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Enthusing future scientists

  Nanocamp 2014 BACK ROW: Sebastian Hallum-Clarke, Ruiteng Liu, Morgan King, Mitchell Oxenbridge, Peter van Nieuwkoop MIDDLE ROW: Hansuel Nam, Teague Harvey, Sarah Messenger, Elizabeth Lunn, Paul Schlumbom, Harley Phong FRONT ROW: Emily McCarthy, Anna Hendrie, Ella Austin, Nancy Zhou     Fifteen teenagers from throughout New Zealand spent a week in Wellington at The MacDiarmid Institute’s Nanocamp in early January. By the end, they were bubbling over […]

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New Faces: Michelle Dickinson

Michelle Dickinson has always been interested in how things work. Her father, an aircraft engineer, would leave bits of circuitry lying about the house (Michelle remembers this frustrating her mother somewhat) and encouraged Michelle to take things apart and put them back together again.  This natural curiosity and an ability in maths and science was nurtured at school—“at no time was I ever made to […]

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Transparency

Gazing out from the fifth floor of the Electrical and Computer Engineering building on the Canterbury campus, it seems fitting that one of Martin Allen’s research areas is transparent devices for smart windows. “There’s so much glass involved in modern construction that actually being able to make fully transparent devices, that can go onto that glass and harvest their own energy from the sun, is […]

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Making Patterns

These days, the sound of drilling at the University of Canterbury is usually associated with the huge amount of construction going on after the earthquakes, but sitting in Maan Alkaisi’s office on the fifth floor of the Electrical and Computer Engineering building, the drilling outside his office signifies something far more auspicious. “So you’re witnessing the sign with my name being changed. I got promoted to […]

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Dec
03

Water for the world

Keoni Mahelona wants to ‘provide water for the world’. “If water is the next commodity, I don’t want greedy companies owning it in the future,” he says. Mahelona has experienced firsthand what water scarcity is like. “I’ve lived in the Far North and I know that families do run out of water, every summer for […]

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Inspired by science

  In collaboration with educators from across the sector TheWaterGenie, a water management system that will allow households using rainwater tanks to better manage their use, has been working on a range of resources and projects that will further encourage an understanding of, and passion for science in the wider community.  THE LEARNING HUB on The MacDiarmid […]

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Earth by numbers

Gillian Turner – Author of North Pole, South Pole (Awa Press) one of six books “infused with science” that the Wellington publishing house has released since the Masterclasses began. FOR THE LAST eight years, The MacDiarmid Institute has run a science class for invited journalists, radio producers, and people from the publishing and creative industries. […]

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One person tells one person and so on and so on…

What starts a trend? What creates a habit? What defines a culture? What delivers more than at one time would have even been imagined? Our culture of excellence is driven by individuals who deliver outcomes beyond expectations. This, in turn, drives the desire to do even more, expect even more and ask others to do […]

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Dec
03

Biominerals to bones

Anybody in need of joint replacement surgery will appreciate the options modern medicine provides, but if Kate McGrath has her way, future patients won’t require any screws or other metal parts in their new hips or knees. The director of the MacDiarmid Institute and her research team are borrowing ideas from nature to develop innovative […]

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From trash to treasure

There are thousands of different types of proteins— probably millions—collectively capable of carrying out a huge number of complex processes, and yet they are all made out of just 20 building blocks.    ANTONY said it of Cleopatra—but the same could be said of proteins—‘custom cannot stale their infinite variety’. There are thousands of different […]

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Dec
03

Speeding up science

WELLINGTON-based startup Publons took its name from a nerdy physics joke about the academic publishing industry. According to the joke, the elusive ‘publon’ is the elementary particle of scientific publication, but the academic publishing business is no laughing matter. Co-founder of Publons, Andrew Preston, says the industry is big. “Last year 1.6 million journal articles […]

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Dec
03

Focused on the human equation

As a PhD Student, David Melville worked at The MacDiarmid Institute with Professor Richard Blaikie investigating photolithography. He has recently shifted into the field of what IBM call Cognitive Computing.   AS A PhD STUDENT, David Melville worked at The MacDiarmid Institute with Professor Richard Blaikie investigating photolithography—the process by which computer chips are made. […]

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Harnessing Nature

Bernd Rehm was only 15 years old when he decided he would become a microbiologist. True to his early ambitions, Professor Bernd Rehm 
is now the Chair of Microbiology at Massey University where he has spent several decades studying polymers, or, more precisely, the polymers produced in nature. Consider, for instance, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a common […]

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Inspiring The Next Generation

Cather Simpson went to university to become a neurosurgeon, but found herself drawn to maths and physics instead. “Some people just 
like maths,” she says. “There’s a sort
 of internal and aesthetic satisfaction that comes from solving an equation, or describing some physical system, using what you know about maths and physics.” By the time […]

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A Material World

John Kennedy is the father of two daughters, aged nine and five, and because I am ringing on the weekend, their cheerful voices can be heard throughout our conversation.
“I told them I had an appointment, but they still want me to play with them,” he says, laughing. Kennedy moved to New Zealand in 2001, and […]

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Unlocking the Secrets of Cell Membranes

Duncan McGillivray travels a lot. When I finally manage speak to him, he is in Washington DC, but he’s just been in the UK at the Rutherford Laboratory, home to one of the world’s brightest neutron sources. That was really fun. Excellent science, with beautiful summer weather, a few pubs and cute villages in between,” he […]

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OPINION: The Value of Science by Joe Trodahl

The question put to me is “What is the value of science and innovation in/ for New Zealand?” Is my impression correct; does the word “innovation”
 in that question focus on economic advancement? In reality, innovation is required to advance science as well as the economy, and most else as well, but to me the […]

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Simon Hall – Passive Student, Active Scientist

  Simon Hall, specialist in the use of electrochemistry for energy storage applications at Massey University, describes himself as having been a “passive student.” He was born into a family that valued science, with his father having completed a chemistry MSc at Victoria University a few years behind Alan MacDiarmid. Simon’s father worked in industry […]

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Thinking Outside the Box

  Paul Kruger has bucked the trend, and gone the other way across the Tasman. “I’m originally from Melbourne,” he says. “But it’s not like I came from Australia directly to here, I came via Ireland and collected a family along the way.” He moved to Christchurch with his wife and two young children about […]

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Tackling the Science

  Natalie Plank’s vision is to develop a research platform focused on nanomaterial-based electronic devices for biosensors. Plank believes nanomaterials have enormous practical potential in
the field of medical diagnostics and mass screening techniques, but are also unpredictable – and for that reason, fascinating. Natalie took up her job as lecturer
in the School of Chemical and […]

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Jeff Tallon – Asking The Big Questions

  Jeff’s internationally renowned research focuses on high-Tc superconductors (HTS), particularly the physics and materials science of HTS – thermodynamics, magnetism, electronic transport properties, novel materials, and flux pinning. He’s been a research scientist for 46 years – working through three versions of the same government body – DSIR, IRL, and now, Callaghan Innovation. During […]

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Andreas Markwitz – An Exploring Person

  Andreas’ research, as Principal Scientist at GNS Science, focuses on silicon nanosurface interfaces, and how our understanding of new materials can be applied to industry. He is a pioneer of electron beam annealing, which can manufacture surfaces on the 1nm scale, and his work with industry has allowed him an understanding of the critical […]

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Jim Metson – Access to the Tool Kit

Jim Metson’s into materials – particularly surface science with a key focus on metal oxides and applications for the aluminium industry. He’s an associate director of the Light Materials Research Centre at the University of Auckland, and Deputy Dean of Science. Jim characterises his early career as “we’re doing what we do until we figure […]

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Chance Only Favours the Prepared Mind

Looking back at eleven years of the MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology   “When you’ve got the equipment, the expertise, and the space to think about problems in a different way, the research almost tells its own story.”   Popular culture delights in the concept of scientific serendipity: Alexander Fleming discovering penicillin after […]

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Editorial: From There to Where?

  Ensuring maximum growth, evolution and rejuvenation through understanding, appreciating and acknowledging from where and how we began and ultimately greater rewards and outcomes.   Can anyone doubt that the future is strongest when built on a past from which we have learnt and grown?  That moving forward happens faster when we are led and […]

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Alison Downard – Taking a Circuitous Route

  An electrochemist, with a particular interest in surface science with a nanotechnology focus, Alison Downard’s first couple of years of undergrad were in the Department of Home Science at the University of Otago. This was in the 1970s, when a home science qualification was compulsory for those interested in becoming a dietician, as she […]

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The Man Who Moved The Atom

  If the shorthand description for Ernest Rutherford is “the man who split the atom”, Don Eigler‘s tagline has to be “the man who moved the atom”. In 1989, Don achieved a landmark in mankind’s history of building structures by demonstrating that it was possible to assemble things atom by atom. He showed this by placing 35 […]

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United Nations In A Lab

  It’s become commonplace to describe a multi-national group as a veritable United Nations, but in the case of the Magnetic Resonance Physics Group based at Victoria University the cliché holds true. With all the PhD candidates coming from overseas, and academic colleagues visiting from the US, UK, Germany, Sweden, Israel, Mexico, Japan and Australia, […]

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Energy, Emulating Leaves and an Emmy Nomination

  Professor Daniel Nocera thinks that if the world behaved more like scientists, there’d be less war – everyone would see themselves as the part of the world, rather than individual countries. Nocera’s long and illustrious career has seen him work with many promising young scientists who now work in laboratories around the world creating […]

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Complicated Attractions

    Imagine this; computers powerful enough to accurately predict the weather, or capable of economic modelling, or modelling how viruses will attack the body, or even how the body develops. This is the future of computation as imagined by Michelle Simmons, Physics Professor at the University of New South Wales and Director of the […]

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Bio-Inspired

Technological advancement may be imperative to modern civilisation, but 
we might like to keep our achievements in context; in many instances, a primitive organism has found the solution to a problem we never knew existed. Take, for instance, the sea sponge, one of several organisms to have attracted the attention of Joanna Aizenberg, Professor of […]

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Lost In Translation

  There are words that are used when cultures meet—collision, encounter—that draw
 the reader, the listener, towards their own conclusions—a violent act, a skirting of the issues, a lack of connectivity. Then there are lived moments that take issue with these words. Picture, if you can, Nobel Laureate Roald Hoffmann, speaking on behalf of the Advanced […]

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Speak, Memory

Roald Hoffmann is Professor of Humane Letters at Cornell – a glorious destination for anyone – and a particularly marvelous title for a person whose life’s work stems from an intense belief in the power of language (letters) to convey our shared humanity. That he is a Nobel Laureate, winning the Nobel Prize for Chemistry […]

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Radical Science

  “Think of polymer chains as a string of pearls,” says Krzysztof Matyjaszewski with his Polish accent, “these chains are built very quickly, approximately 1 millisecond per pearl.” Matyjaszewski is describing radical polymerisation, the process by which 50% of all polymers created commercially are produced. “This process is very difficult to control,” he says. “We wanted […]

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Creating A New Universe

To go about something as ambitious as the creation of an alternative universe, you probably wouldn’t think of starting with something as humble as a pencil. But it turns out that the graphite in the pencil lead has some rather fascinating properties that make it a better universe-building material than you might think. Graphite, as […]

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Conferring Continues With Collaborations

The AMN6 Conference may just have finished, but the convenor for AMN7 already has planning well underway for the next meeting.
  MacDiarmid Institute Principal Investigator Dr Shane Telfer is looking forward to welcoming delegates to Nelson in February 2015, and is currently on the hunt for the high-profile keynote speakers that have proven a drawcard […]

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Post Doctoral Fellows

  The MacDiarmid Institute currently supports 13 Post Doctoral Fellowships, allowing early career scientists to focus on developing their research with the support and collaboration of some of the top researchers in New Zealand. Three of these Post Doctoral Fellows are profiled here. Suresh Narayanaswamy IRL, Gracefield, Wellington (s.narayan@irl.cri.nz) PhD in Shock wave research 2002 […]

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Connections On The Human Scale

  One of the Centres of Research Excellence raison d’etres is public science communication, or outreach, as it’s called these days.  Significantly, CoRE policy is managed by the Ministry of Education, part of the super-Ministryof Business, Innovation and Employment, rather than the Ministry of Science. Has this new organizational model resulted in bigger and better […]

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Westmount High – Learning Nanotechnology from the Experts

On 7th September, the Victoria University arm of the MacDiarmid Institute played host to 20 high-school science students. While outreach events typically bring hundreds of students per year to the Institute and its partner organizations for a dose of basic physics and chemistry, this one was a little different. These students, year 12s (that’s 15 […]

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Collaborating On A (Very) Small Scale

    Casual conversations over conference tea-cups, chance meetings in stairwells, idle flicking through a journal – these may not sound like the stuff of which scientific endeavours are made, but they can provide a surprisingly significant role in the development of research projects and collaborations that span an organisation, a city, sometimes even the […]

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Looking in to the Middle Ground

When someone says they are studying soft materials, you may think of cuddly toys or velvet cushions, but to MacDiarmid researchers it means the long chains of molecules that make up cellulose fibres, dairy-based casein micelles and protein filaments in hair or food. These biomaterials form an intermediary hierarchy between the atomic and single molecule […]

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The Buzz of Business

  Eight years ago, PhD student Sam Yu was inspired by a seminar on entrepreneurship organised by Bill Swallow as part of the Growth Industry Pilot Initiative to build enterprise culture in Lincoln University and the University of Canterbury. “It really made me feel passionate about doing the hands-on aspects of science,” Yu recalls. This […]

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Long Life In Battery Development

  The humble battery may seem a bit prosaic for an organisation called the MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology, but research into battery technology, and the underlying science, has been a part of the MacDiarmid Institute since its founding. Before it’s founding, in fact, as Alan MacDiarmid himself gained a Nobel Prize in […]

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Brooker’s Bunch

  It may be 25 years since Sally Brooker received her BSc(Hons) First Class from Canterbury University, but she hasn’t lost her connection to students. The MacDiarmid Institute Principal Investigator and Professor of Chemistry at Otago University maintains a strong research group of Honours students, PhD students and postdoctoral fellows, fondly referred to as “Brooker’s […]

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Commercialisation – The Next Generation

To paraphrase an ancient adage: “Teach a student how to do research, and you get research. Teach a student how to commercialise that research, and you could get a whole new industry.” At least that’s the aim of the MacDiarmid Institute Research Commercialisation Fellowships which encourage research students and post-docs to look at their research […]

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Raman Spectroscopy

  Being able to detect a Raman signal from a single molecule illuminated with laser light has exciting applications in new materials research and analytical chemistry.  However, the team that developed the technique is also using it to find out more about the molecules themselves.  Improving the sensitivity of the detecting technique is a key […]

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A Risky Undertaking Pays Off

The Transit of Venus Forum was a high risk undertaking from the outset. The national forum about science and the economy, environment and people, initiated by Sir Paul Callaghan and the MacDiarmid Institute, was to be held in Tolaga Bay and Gisborne in mid-winter 2012, in association with the rare occurrence of the Transit of […]

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From Competition to Collaboration

  In the mind of former MacDiarmid Institute Director, Richard Blaikie, the beginnings of the MacDiarmid Institute will always be framed in time by a world-changing event that took place on the other side of the globe. When the call came ten years ago for expressions of interest to set up Centres of Research Excellence […]

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The Inside Story of the MacDiarmid Institute

    Not long before he passed away, Sir Paul Callaghan shared his memories of how the MacDiarmid Institute came to be. It all began in 2001 when Paul met the great Kiwi chemist Alan MacDiarmid. At age 53, Paul Callaghan was a world-renowned experimental physicist having pioneered a new field in NMR Spectroscopy at […]

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Experimenting with Theory – Rare Earth Nitrides

  Dr Ben Ruck and Joe Trodahl were already working on metallic nitrides when they came across a paper predicting that related compounds—the rare earth nitrides—would not only have interesting electronic properties, but magnetic properties as well. “That gave us the impetus to start making and measuring them. Our first and perhaps our most significant […]

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Still Fun After All These Years

  For MacDiarmid Institute Principal Investigator David Williams, twenty years of taking his lab-based research to the market in various forms hasn’t dimmed the excitement of being a part of such development. “Good science leads to good technology, and if you’ve got good technology you can commercialise it,” he says. “It’s great.” It’s a familiar […]

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From Molecules to the Market

Taking single molecules and tethering them to a surface to produce highly controllable functions as the basis for precision sensors, medical diagnostic tools or even lighting arrays may sound like the stuff of science fiction, but the groundwork is being tackled in the University of Canterbury lab of Dr Alison Downard. The MacDiarmid Institute Principal […]

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Portals into Other Worlds

  Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction. Hidden in six locations around New Zealand are over twenty portals into other worlds. Unlike Narnia or Middle Earth, these worlds are real, although you would have to shrink around a hundred million times to enter them. At this scale, an orange would loom the size of a […]

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The MacDiarmid Impact

Figure 1: The figure compares the citation impact of the MacDiarmid Institute with that of other prominent international institutions that work in advanced materials and nanotechnology.  The MacDiarmid Institute’s impact has grown considerably and is now closing in on that of MIT.  Sometime this year, the MacDiarmid Institute’s 1000th paper will be indexed by the […]

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Tensor Times

Mark Hunter turned out of bed, got breakfast for his two young sons, then quickly checked his emails before he did anything else. The word ‘unanimous’ grabbed his attention immediately and sparked an adrenalin rush. He’d been expecting word from the Ampere Group about his thesis, which he’d entered into their competition. There were none of […]

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Leading the Blind

For his third career, MacDiarmid graduate David Garrett is aiming to restore sight to the blind. It may sound improbable, but not much more so than the path he has taken to get there. You’d be hard-pressed to invent a more original CV. At age forty, he has secured his first academic post, working to prototype […]

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The 7th annual MacDiarmid Institute Student and Post-Doc Symposium, Wellington 17-18 November 2011

The 2011 symposium was our biggest yet, with over 100 students and post-docs attending alongside the parallel annual Investigators’ meeting — a strong testament to the vitality of the institute. The symposium theme “What’s Next?” provided an opportunity to engage with a range of issues regarding career pathways beyond the MacDiarmid Institute. Dr Cathy Foley (materials […]

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The Emergence of MESA

  2011 was an exciting year for the MacDiarmid Emerging Scientists Association, or MESA as we’re known. Prior to the 2010 Student and Postdoc Symposium I had sent round a few emails asking for interested people to join me in an emerging scientists committee. I couldn’t believe the response. The idea to form the committee came after some discussions […]

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The New Zealand Paradox

  What can we do to lift prosperity in New Zealand? The tools and concepts needed to answer this question have their origins in statistical physics. This is a problem tailor made for physicists and mathematicians at Industrial Research Ltd. Professor Shaun Hendy explains. Nanotechnologists sometimes trace the origins of their field back to a 1959 […]

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The Power of Interface …

It’s no exaggeration, says Dr Evan Blackie, that reading an early copy of Interface about the MacDiarmid Institute and an inspirational foreword by Sir Paul Callaghan directly influenced his return to New Zealand from Japan, where he was having a working holiday, first as an ESOL teacher, then as a science editor. After graduating with a […]

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