13th and 14th of this year, in partnership with NTNU in
Trondheim, the Consulate of Norway and the University of Houston, the Smalley
Institute at Rice University held the third annual NorTex Nanotechnology conference.
We count the 2012 Transatlantic Science Week as being the first. This year, the meeting returned to Houston,
sponsored by the above partners and by GE Oil & Gas and Schlumberger. We
hosted over 100 participants from both Texan and Norwegian universities, along with
researchers from NASA and the Texas Medical Center, and a number of technologists
from multinational corporations.
Participating from Norway, along with NTNU,
were the Universities of Bergen, Stavanger and Oslo. Texas faculty and students
represented Rice, the University of Texas at Austin, Texas A&M University
and the University of Houston.
This was truly a team effort, requiring the
efforts of many faculty and staff members across multiple institutions on both
sides of the Atlantic Ocean.
Also attending was Dr. Jim Abbey, who is the Texas
A&M Director for Global and Corporate Partnerships. Dr. Abbey is very
interested in the progress of Norway/Texas collaboration. Before coming back
home to Texas, he worked for Swansea University in Wales as the UK director of
the Texas/UK Collaborative, which was a successful program established in 2002
to stimulate the exchange of ideas and research between researchers across the
Atlantic. Although this program has gone into sunset, it was highly successful,
resulted in the launch of numerous startup companies, and its example could
potentially serve as a source of organizational ideas for the NorTex Nano
The conference kicked off on Monday morning
with talks by Deputy Minister Ayhan, Dr. Tom Kraft of the Rice Alliance for
Technology and Entrepreneurship, Prof. James Tour, and Prof. Anne Borg, Dean of
Natural Sciences from NTNU.
The real goals of the Summit were to continue
the momentum for ongoing Norway/Texas collaborations and to create new
collaborations, all within the context of identifying pathways toward
commercial applicability and implementation.
For more information on the NorTex Nano Summit, please visit: http://nortexnano.rice.edu/