A Rs. 100-crore nano park, complete with an incubation centre and an institute for nano science, will take shape on the outskirts of Bangalore. It is being funded by the Union government’s Nano Mission, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah announced here on Thursday.

Inaugurating the two-day Bangalore India Nano 2013, Mr. Siddaramaiah said the State had provided 14 acres of land on Tumkur Road for the park, which is meant to catalyse new businesses and innovators.

He invited nanotechnology industries and entrepreneurs from India and abroad to set up their businesses in the park.

The Chief Minister urged scientists to use nanotechnology — the science of ultra-small materials one-millionth of a millimetre — to solve common problems, and said the State will consider increasing the outlay for nanotech and other science initiatives. “I call upon scientists to come up with tangible nanotechnology-based solutions for food security, energy, water purification, medicine and healthcare as well as waste management,” Mr. Siddaramaiah said, while addressing several hundred scientists, academics and entrepreneurs. Sir Andre Geim, joint Nobel Prize 2010 winner for his research in nano carbon called graphene, was among the key people present at the event.

C.N.R. Rao, the force behind the event and Honorary President of the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, said two of the top national institutions to have contributed to nanoscience and technology, namely the Indian Institute of Science and JNCASR, are both in Bangalore.

He called for continued funding of nano science, a difficult and complicated area for research.

India, he said, has made a reasonable beginning in using nanotechnology, starting with producing safe drinking water. “We have a long way to go in nanotechnology. Its many possible applications have far-reaching consequences such as new skin for burns patients or drugs targeting cancer tissues. Very soon we will have many solutions to serious problems like health delivery,” he said.

His laboratory at JNCASR has been working on making hydrogen with the help of nanomaterials; if it can be stored properly, hydrogen could be the energy source of future cars and trains. IT Secretary Srivatsa Krishna gave a sample of scientific fantasies that could come true in this decade using nanotechnology: a flexi-screen phone, tiny nano-based drones that fly Amazon.com’s books to customers; flappable newspapers with audio and video features and a tiny robotic camera that shows what ails you in your gut.

Correction: There was a reference to Sir Andre Geim’s (joint Nobel Prize 2010 winner) research in nano carbon called grapheme in the report, “Nano park coming up in Bangalore” (Dec. 6, 2013). Actually, it is graphene. Grapheme is “the class of letters and other visual symbols that represent a phoneme or a cluster of phonemes.” For example: the f in fun, the ph in phantom, and he gh in laugh. Graphene is a form of carbon.

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