Nanotech & Nanotoxicology
Scientists from Russia, the United States, and several other countries gathered along the shores of Lake Baikal (Listvyanka, Russia) August 15 – 19 for the 2nd Applied Nanotechnology & Nanotoxicology meeting. Dr. Anna Shvedova from the U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health served on the Scientific Committee and spoke in the opening plenary session. The meeting serves to strengthen cooperation on environmental health and safety research, one of the key objectives of the Nanotechnology sub-Working Group of the BPC’s Science and Technology Working Group. A third meeting is scheduled to take place in 2015 in Kazan, Russia.
The Conference covered the following topics: Nanotechnology (synthesis of novel nanostructured materials; unique physicochemical features of nanostructures; characterization methods for nanoparticles; nanosize effects in catalysis; nanotechologies for green chemistry and clean energy); and Nanotoxicology (toxicology of nanoparticles; toxicity of purified and non-purified nanomaterials, oxidative stress and antioxidants; tissue specific response to nanoparticles; recognition and clearance of nanoparticles; individual resistance/susceptibility to nano-contamination; animal models in nanotoxicology).
Science Workshop Addresses Climate Change and Hydrologic Modeling
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists met with counterparts at the State Hydrological Institute (SHI) in St. Petersburg and the Hydrometcentre (HMC) in Moscow. The scientific exchanges focused on climate change and streamflow monitoring operations and analysis. SHI Director Vasily Georgievsky’s research on streamflow trends in response to climate change is similar to USGS research. The USGS participants benefited from SHI’s extensive experience with Siberian wetlands hydrology and with river and lake ice hydrology, while HMC scientists plan to apply U.S. experience and research to their work in the Volga River basin and Black Sea region.
U.S.-Russian Geohazards Symposium
Experts from the U.S. and Russia met in Moscow July 17-19, to focus on the high risk of extreme geophysical events in the Kamchatka-Aleutian-Alaska region and to discuss collaborative steps to make the area safer for inhabitants and visitors. Participants shared their expertise in disaster risk reduction, prediction methodologies, and impact mitigation of volcano eruptions, tsunamis, and earthquakes. Experts analyzed the two countries’ disaster preparedness, identified gaps in knowledge and skills, and mapped out next steps for joint efforts. Representatives from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the University of Alaska Fairbanks joined their colleagues from the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Ministry of Education and Science, Roshydromet, EMERCOM, Roscosmos, Rosaviation, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Natural Resources, and the Russian Geophysical Service to identify specific steps that we can take together to make our shared backyard – the Kamchatka-Aleutian-Alaska region – safer for people and their livelihoods.
Joint Research Competition with Ural Branch of RAS
CRDF Global and the Ural Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) are currently accepting proposals for the 2012 Joint Basic Research Competition: Innovative Technologies and New Materials, Nanotechnology, Energy Research, Sustainable Resource Management, and Ecology of the Russian Far North. Up to five awards will be made for two years of support to joint research teams of U.S. and Russian scientists. The U.S. funding comes from the Department of State and the National Science Foundation. For more information, please visit the CRDF-Urals RAS Request for Proposals webpage.
Russian Nanotechnology Scientists Visit United States
From March 6 to March 21, six Russian scientists traveled to San Francisco and Washington, D.C. through the Open World Program, an exchange program designed to foster relationships between U.S. and Russian leaders in a variety of fields. While in San Francisco, the group attended the Society of Toxicology’s 51st Annual Meeting and ToxExpo and conducted site visits to the Lawrence Berkeley, Sandia, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories.
Russian Experts Discuss Nanotechnology Development
On March 28, experts from the Russian Higher School of Economics spoke in Washington, D.C. at the “International Symposium on Assessing the Economic Impact of Nanotechnology,” an event organized by the U.S. National Nanotechnology Initiative and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (http://nano.gov/symposium). Issues addressed at the Symposium included the economic impacts of nanotechnology, input and output factors, the role of research funding portfolios, intellectual property frameworks, venture capital, public-private partnerships, state and local initiatives, international cooperation, and metrics such as private sector and industry investments, patents and publications, and the development of a technologically-educated workforce as metrics for nanotechnology. Russian participation in this event was one of the goals identified during the December 2011 meeting of the Science and Technology Working Group in Washington.
U.S. and Russian Scientists Discuss Environment and Health Issues of Nanotechnology
Six innovative Russian scientists traveled to San Francisco, CA and Washington, DC from March 10 through March 21, under the Open World Program – an exchange program designed to foster relationships between U.S. and Russian leaders in a variety of fields including science and technology. The event was co-sponsored by the Open World Leadership Center (an independent agency in the U.S. legislative branch) and the U.S. Department of State. While in San Francisco the group attended the Society of Toxicology’s 51st Annual Meeting and ToxExpo and enjoyed site visits to Lawrence Berkeley, Sandia, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories. During their subsequent three-day visit to Washington, the delegation met with Members of Congress and their staff, U.S. officials at the Department of State and with scientists at the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. These meetings were identified by the Science and Technology Working Group of the Bilateral Presidential Commission and the U.S. National Nanotechnology Coordination Office as a unique opportunity for scientists from both nations to engage in discussions about a challenging area of research – nanotoxicology.
Nanotechnology Experts Exchange Views Digitally
Nanotechnology experts focused on key projects such as the proposed Joint Center for Nano-Bioscience, a project on synthetic diamonds and project on biscrolled catalytic yarn textiles (for highly efficient, yet inexpensive, thermal energy harvesting applications) at a December digital video conference. The Nanotechnology Sub-Working Group further discussed cooperation with international organizations, including nanotechnology standardization, and mechanisms for joint funding and researcher exchange.
S&T Memorandum of Understanding Signed
Dr. John Holdren, U.S. Science and Technology Working Group co-chair and Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, met his fellow BPC co-chair Russian Minister of Education and Science Andrey Fursenko, in Washington, D.C., December 15. The meeting generated a signed MOU between the U.S. National Science Foundation and the Russian Ministry of Education and Science which aims to establish a cooperative framework with which to support U.S. and Russian scientists and engineers. For more information on the MOU, please click here.
RUSNANO Makes Major Investment
Plans were announced on October 27 for RUSNANO to invest $50 million in two leading U.S. nanomedicine research companies. The investments ($25 million to Selecta Biosciences and $25 million to BIND Biosciences) are intended to improve the development and commercialization of advanced vaccines and cancer drugs as well as a vaccine against nicotine addiction in Russia. On the occasion, U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Beyrle said, “An alliance such as this between RUSNANO and Selecta and BIND exemplifies the goals of the U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission and represents an important opportunity for leaders in their respective fields from the Russian Federation and the United States to contribute to future progress and shared prosperity. Through this collaboration, we see tremendous potential to more rapidly globalize advanced technology from the United States by establishing operations in strategic international markets, such as here in the Russian Federation.”
Moscow Workshop Promotes Technology Entrepreneurship
The U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation (CRDF) organized a Technology Entrepreneurship Workshop in partnership with the Skolkovo Foundation (Energy Efficiency Cluster) and the Russian Federal Foundation for Assistance to Small Innovative Enterprises (FASIE) in Moscow, October 3-5. This was CRDF’s first joint event with the Skolkovo Foundation. CRDF combined U.S. governmental support with significant cost-sharing contributions from the partners. Among other activities, the workshop provided one-on-one mentoring sessions by five prominent U.S. business experts. It concluded with a business presentation competition in which the winners were awarded travel grants for a business trip to the United States sometime before the end of 2011.
Grant Finalists Selected
CRDF Global and the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (RFBR) jointly agreed on the selection of six finalists from the 2010 CRDF Global - RFBR V Energy Grant Competition. The competition was designed to support high quality, collaborative research in Russia in areas related to energy. The grants will provide funding to the six joint U.S.-Russian teams for up to two years. More information about the finalists can be found here.
Event Encourages Technology Development
The Innovation Capacity Development Program, part of CRDF Global's Basic Research and Higher Education (BRHE) Program, hosted a Technology Commercialization Practicum from May 23-25, 2011 in St. Petersburg. The event was open to scientists, entrepreneurs, and technology professionals from local organizations and universities. Experts from Russia and the United States led professional development and commercialization sessions for participants. The event concluded with CRDF awarding four participants travel grants to the U.S., where they will receive additional training and professional development.
Science and Innovation Delegation Travels to Moscow
The Science and Technology Working Group, the Education Sub-Working Group, and the U.S.-Russia Innovation Council on High Technology (ICHT), a public-private sector initiative promoting technology innovation, participated in the first ever “Science and Innovation Week” in Moscow. Learn more»
Launch of Science and Technology Working Group
Dr. Holdren met with Presidential Adviser Arkadiy Dvorkovich, Assistant to President Medvedev and G-8 Sherpa, Presidential Administration during Dr. Holdren's visit to Moscow to launch the Science and Technology Working Group.