C/ Mariano Esquillor, s/n
50018 Zaragoza Z
The Institute of Nanoscience of Aragon (INA) is an interdisciplinary research institute located in the “Campus Río Ebro” at the University of Zaragoza (Spain).
INA is dedicated to R&D in nanoscience and nanotechnology. Its activities are based on manufacturing and processing micro and nanoscaled structures (10-6 m and 10-9 m respectively) and studying their applications, in collaboration with companies and technological institutes from different areas and countries.
INA has high-level experts of different disciplines: Physics, Chemistry, Engineering, Biochemistry and Medicine, which allows the Institute to perform a multidisciplinary research using all branches of knowledge to address nanoscience. Almost 140 researchers (67PhDs and 18 qualified technicians) work at INA. In addition, there is a Transfer and Promotion Office that supports the R&D activity. The goal of this office is to forge links between companies and the Institute.
Mission and Vision of INA
The mission of the Institute of Nanoscience of Aragon is to develop its three research areas (Nanobiomedicine, Nanomaterials and Physics of nanosystems) through training and cutting edge facilities that enable its researchers the development of national and international projects in these areas.
The vision of the INA is to establish the Institute as an international research center of excellence in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology through the attraction and retention of top talent researchers, technology transfer, identification and promotion of entrepreneurial opportunities, and development of new high tech companies.
Nanotechnology is a cross-cutting science and has broad possibilities in very different sectors: health sector (pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, biomedicine), environmental sector, transportation both aerospace and automotive, energy, textile, construction, packaging, agro-food, mechanical, electronics and new materials.
Spin-off and patents
Since its foundation, the Institute of Nanoscience of Aragon is boosting the applied research in order to drive commercialization of new nanoscience discoveries through technology transfer and the creation of new spin-off companies.
The large vocation of INA for innovation and technology transfer that so far has resulted in three start-up companies:
- Nanoimmunotech: dedicated to the biological and physico-chemical characterization and to the conjugation of nanoparticles and products containing them.
- nB nanoScale Biomagnetics: dedicated to the production of scientific and biomedical instruments.
- Graphene Nanotech: technology-based company dedicated to investigate, produce and distribute high-quality epitaxial graphene grown on Silicon Carbide (SiC) substrates.
Since 2003 the INA has licensed 21 patents (9-Extension PCT in Europe, 1-Extension United States, 7 patents licensed to companies and 1-exploitation). This success can be explained by the specific Transfer and Promotion Office for technology promotion of regional, national and European projects that INA has implemented.
The office’s efforts have made possible that the INA currently has relationships with more than 40 SMEs and multinational companies and with technology centers both nationally and internationally. INA has its own Technology Transfer Office which is exclusively dedicated to the promotion of technology, being the bridge that connects the Institute to the companies and centers.
Collaboration in platforms and networks
INA is member of different technological platforms, clusters and networks:
- Nanolithography Network.
- Nanospain Platform.
- European Nanobiomedicine Technology Platform.
- Ciber-BBN: Center for Biomedical Research in Network in Bioengineering, Biomaterials and Nanomedicine.
- Ibernam: Iber Red in Micro and Nano technologies.
- Manu-ket: Spanish Technological Platform for Advanced Manufacturing.
- Platea: Spanish Technological Platform for Steel.
- Planeta: Spanish Technological Platform for Environmental Technologies.
- Suschem: Spanish Technological Platform for Sustinaible Chemestry.
- Planetic: ICT Spanish Cluster.
- Arahealth:Health Cluster of Aragon.
- Caar:Automotive Cluster of Aragon.
- Zinnae: Water Cluster of Aragon.
More information about INA: http://ina.unizar.es
Located within INA is the Advanced Microscopy Laboratory, LMA.
LMA is a unique initiative at national and international levels aimed at providing the Industrial and Scientific communities with the most advanced infrastructures in Nanofabrication, Local Probe and Electron Microscopy for the observation, characterization, nanopatterning and handling of materials at atomic and molecular scale.
All LMA instruments and the expertise of the scientists and technical staff involved are offered to researchers from other public and private research centers and also to professionals from industrial sectors at national and international levels.
The available infrastructures at LMA are divided in the following areas:
Dual Beam, SEM, XPS, and XRD areas
- Cryogenic Dual Beam Nova 200
- Dual Beam Helios Nanolab 600 and 650
- Environmental Scanning Electron Microscope SEM-Quanta FEG 250, ESEM
- Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope CSEM-FEG INSPECT 50
- XRD: Bruker D8 Advance High Resolution Diffractometer
- XPS-AES: Kratos AXIS Ultra DLD X-Ray Photoelectron Spectrometer
Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) area
- Titan High-Base for High Resolution Imaging: FEI TITAN3
- Analytical Titan Low-Base: FEI TITAN Low-Base
- Transmission Electron Microscope: Tecnai F30
- TEM: Sample Preparation Service
Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM) area
- Low Temperature (LT), Ultra High Vacuum (UHV-LT) Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM) Laboratory
- SPM with High Magnetic Fields and Low Temperature
- SPM in Environmental Conditions
Other available techniques
- Raman Microscopy
- FTIR Microsocopy
- Micro-Nanofabrication in clean room
All the indicated techniques can be used by industry and technological or research centers through the protocol of access to the facilities: http://lma.unizar.es/access-request/
A complete information about research lines at LMA and Industrial Areas of application of the LMA infraestructures are available in the LMA web site.
INA-LMA offers its instruments and support to different industrial sectors. Some of the most representative industrial sectors for which LMA performs a variety of microscopic and analytical services are the followings:
- Biotechnology, Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Industry
- Characterization of functionalized nanoparticles.
- Characterization of different types of biomaterials and biological samples.
- Characterization of the plasmonic behavior for optical applications in biotechnology.
- Contamination and particle identification. Particle sizing. Surface and interface analysis.
- Chemical composition and structure of C/N/O based samples.
- Shape memory alloys: brackets for dental and stents for medical applications.
- Chemical Industry
- Characterization of new materials.
- Contaminant particle identification.
- Characterization of nanopaints, adhesives and general coatings for a wide variety of industrial applications.
- Characterization of thin films and surface coatings.
- Microstructural characterization of Ag-based and other metallorganic nanoparticles.
- Plastic and Polymer Industry:
- Characterization of new polymer nanocomposites.
- Characterization of polymeric fibers with micro and nanoencapsulation.
- ICT and Electronic:
- Design and development of MEMS and NEMS (Micro and Nano-Electro-Mechanical Systems).
- Micro-and nanofabrication using optical lithography and focused beam of electrons and ions in clean room.
- Characterization of new systems based on magnetoresistance.
- Solar cells: characterization of the different layers and interfaces.
- Surface characterization of CMOS devices fabricated by optical lithography techniques.
- Analysis of defective parts in radiocomunication equipment.
- Engineering of functional nanostructures by atomic manipulation.
Textile & Footwear:
- Characterization of capsules incorporating vitamin E and other additives to be used in textile industry.
- Characterization of new nanomaterials to produce fibers with advanced properties.
- Chemical composition analysis of production samples with different results in quality tests.
- Nanohealth and Safety:
- Characterization of nanoparticle dispersions and aerosols in controlled environments.
- Monitoring of nanomaterial behavior in occupational settings.
- Characterization of nanoparticles as bactericide agents.
- Characterization of nanoparticles for animal feed and drinking water additives.
- Fresh and processed food microscopy analysis.
- Smart Systems:
- R&D in new concepts of intelligent systems based on sensors–actuators, industrial application of the thermoelectricity and spintronics or new generation and energy transfer methods.
- Evaluation of cleaning processes and their production parameters in Zn-coated steel samples.
- Analysis of metallic pieces after different soldering processes.
- Optimization of process parameters of a Si-coating line for steel pieces.
- New materials:
- Metal organic frameworks (MOFs) and their potential applications in gas storage, gas purification or heterogeneous catalysis.
- Graphene and Nanotubes and their potential applications in medicine, electronics, plasmonics, energy, etc.
- Characterization of graphene oxide and reduced graphene oxide samples.
- Evaluating the quality (contaminants, chemical structure, homogeneity) of graphene-like based samples.
- Epoxy nanocomposites for sensors, energy or medicine applications.
- Automotive Industry:
- Characterization of nanocomposites involved in giant magnetoresistance sensors for automobile brakes.
- Looking for the origin of different soldering behavior in production samples.
- Chemical Characterization of surfaces in metallic samples.
- Analysis of contamination in pipes.
- Analysis of size, morphology and chemical composition of graphene and materials composed of graphene particles by SEM.
- Home Appliances Industry:
- Characterization of materials and nanostructuration of surfaces.
- Chemical characterization of samples to evaluate cleaning processes.
- Analysis of injection molded polymers and their additives.
- Hi-Tec Sports:
- Comparing and Evaluating compositional and structural chemical differences in polymeric samples.
- Corrective lenses Industry:
- Structural and compositional nanocharacterization of optical lenses.