USDA announces $4.6 million for nanotechnology research

July 31, 2017

The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) has announced 13 grants totaling $4.6 million for research on the next generation of agricultural technologies and systems to meet the growing demand for food, fuel, and fiber. The grants are funded through NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.
“Nanotechnology is being rapidly implemented in medicine, electronics, energy, and biotechnology, and it has huge potential to enhance the agricultural sector,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. “NIFA research investments can help spur nanotechnology-based improvements to ensure global nutritional security and prosperity in rural communities.”

Grants being announced in the nanotechnology for agriculture and food systems area include the following:

  • Kansas State University (Manhattan, Kan.): $450,200
  • Wichita State University (Wichita, Kan.): $340,000
  • University of Massachusetts (Amherst, Mass.): $444,550
  • University of Nevada (Las Vegas): $150,000
  • North Dakota State University (Fargo, N.D.): $149,000
  • Cornell University (Ithaca, N.Y.): $455,000
  • Cornell University (Ithaca, N.Y.): $450,200
  • Oregon State University (Corvallis, Ore.): $402,550
  • University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia): $405,055
  • Gordon Research Conferences (West Kingston, R.I.): $45,000
  • The University of Tennessee (Knoxville, Tenn.): $450,200
  • Utah State University (Logan, Utah): $450,200
  • The George Washington University (Washington, D.C.): $450,200

Among the grants, a University of Pennsylvania project will engineer cellulose nanomaterials with high toughness for potential use in building materials, automotive components, and consumer products. A University of Nevada–Las Vegas project will develop a rapid, sensitive test to detect Salmonella typhimurium to enhance food supply safety.

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