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COordination of NANOMETrology in Europe

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The true measure of EU nanometrology

Nanotechnology offers huge potential in terms of applications and economic benefits for the EU. Nanometrology, as an indispensable part of nanotechnology, must develop hand in hand with nanoscience.

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Nanometrology is the science of measurement on a nano scale. Today's global economy depends on reliable measurements, prompting the establishement of the 'Coordination of nanometrology in Europe' (CO-NANOMET) project. Through EU funding, the project aimed to define a European strategy for nanometrology. This included identifying leading nanometrology activities across Europe and coordinating the training and education of scientists, engineers and end users. Five action groups were set up to research the areas of engineered nanoparticles, nanobiotechnology, thin films and structured surfaces, critical dimensions and scanning probe techniques, modelling and simulation. After a discussion paper had been developed by each group, dedicated workshops were implemented to further explore their findings. Based on the results, an 'Introductory guide to nanometrology' has been compiled by CO-NANOMET. The guide represents a valuable tool for the nanometrology community: it increases awareness of the field and it establishes a common metrological frame of reference. The project also developed a vision for European nanometrology in 2020, with future goals and research needs. By improving the reliability of measurement and analysis at the nano level, CO-NANOMET has certainly contributed to EU science and the economy.

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