The Nano Mission, 2007 is an umbrella programme for capacity building which envisages the overall development of this field of research in the country and to tap some of its applied potential for nation’s development. In brief, the objectives of the Nano-Mission are:
Basic Research Promotion – Funding of basic research by individual scientists and/or groups of scientists and creation of centres of excellence for pursuing studies leading to fundamental understanding of matter that enables control and manipulation at the nanoscale.
Infrastructure Development for Nano Science & Technology Research – Investigations on the nano scale require expensive equipments like Optical Tweezer, Nano Indentor, Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM), Atomic Force Microscope (AFM), Scanning Tunneling Microscope (STM), Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Time of Flight Mass Spectrometer (MALDI TOF MS), Microarray Spotter & Scanner etc. For optimal use of expensive and sophisticated facilities, it is proposed to establish a chain of shared facilities across the country.
Nano Applications and Technology Development Programmes– To catalyze Applications and Technology Development Programmes leading to products and devices, the Mission proposes to promote application-oriented R&D Projects, estabsish Nano Applications and Technology Development Centres, Nano-Technology Business Incubators etc. Special effort will be made to involve the industrial sector into nanotechnology R&D directly or through Public Private Partnership (PPP) ventures.
Human Resource Development – The Mission shall focus on providing effective education and training to researchers and professionals in diversified fields so that a genuine interdisciplinary culture for nanoscale science, engineering and technology can emerge. It is planned to launch M.Sc./M.Tech. programmes, create national and overseas post-doctoral fellowships, chairs in universities, etc.
International Collaborations – Apart from exploratory visits of scientists, organization of joint workshops and conferences and joint research projects, it is also planned to facilitate access to sophisticated research facilities abroad, establish joint centres of excellence and forge academia-industry partnerships at the international level wherever required and desirable.
The Nano Mission is a Mission-Mode programme within DST. At the apex level, it is steered by a Nano Mission Council (NMC). It is currently being chaired by Professor CNR Rao, FRS, National Research Professor and Honorary President & Linus Pauling Research Professor, Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Bangalore.
The technical programmes of the Nano Mission are also being guided by two advisory groups, viz. the Nano Science Advisory Group (NSAG) and the Nano Applications and Technology Advisory Group (NATAG).