About Us

About the Center

  • The Birck Nanotechnology Center, opened in 2005, is a major research facility at Purdue University. It is focused on supporting basic science, applied research, research and development and protoype production using characterization and fabrication technology.
  • Birck is a 186,000 sq ft. shared use facility that includes a 25,000 sq. ft. ISO Class 3-4-5-6 (Class 1-10-100-1000) nano­fabrication cleanroom – the Scifres Nanofabrication Laboratory. This includes one of the first integrations of biopharma and semiconductor cleanrooms in universities.
  • Birck is the research home for more than 300 residents including support staff, graduate researchers, and faculty from six academic colleges. It also hosts more than 300 users from across campus as well as outside industries and universities.
  • Students and researchers have access to 33,000 sf of shared labs with state-of-the-art nano fabrication and nano characterization tools. Shared labs and office space provide ample opportunities for students to learn from each other and to work on societal grand challenge problems.  

Research at Birck

  • Birck is home to leading-edge equipment for epitaxy, lithography, etching, processing and packaging.
  • It is maintained by 13 full-time engineering staff members.
  • Characterization services provided by our research scientist team include electron microscopy, optical, surface, electrical and magnetic characterization in their specialized characterization labs. 
  • Main research thrusts are nano electronics including spintronics, 2D materials, quantum and probabilistic computing, nano/quantum photonics and meta materials, micro/nano electro mechanical systems (MEMS), nanobio, lab-on-a-chip, 3D cell culture facility, surface science and AFM, nano energy conversion devices as well as roll-to-roll nano manufacturing.
  • Birck faculty bring $25-30M/year in external research funding. 
  • Birck is home to Purdue’s leading research, development and workforce training efforts in secure/trusted microelectronics and semiconductor technology, supporting researchers in their efforts to meet national need.
  • Birck is home to the SMART industry consortium focused on printed low-cost internet of things (IoT) devices; LyoHUB, a consortium of more than 20 pharmaceutical companies working to improve freeze drying techniques; as well as Microsoft Station Q at Purdue.
  • Birck is leading a $19.8M Lilly Endowment project at Purdue, the Wabash Heartland Innovation Network (WHIN). The goal is to develop community IoT testbeds in digital agriculture and in next generation manufacturing in the ten counties surrounding our university. The WHIN region includes 400,000 residents with more than 250 small and medium manufacturers as well as 2,000 farmers. Our goal is to create one of the most sensored regions where IoT and data analytics help create a high tech ecosystem around Purdue.
  • Birck researchers bring theory and experiment together by working closely with nanoHUB (an NSF center headquartered at Purdue) which develops latest simulation tools as well as nanotechnology educational material. Recently, we have expanded collaborations with College of Liberal Arts by organizing shark tank Storytelling Competition with Brian Lamb School of Communication as well as with Arts and Design, Regenstreif center, and Krannert Business Analytics program by co-organizing Purdue 2050 Conference of the Future as a part of Purdue’s 150th anniversary events.This interactive conference and design competition focused on the future of technology and society and included sessions on future of healthcare, manufacturing/factories, smart cities/houses, privacy, art and innovation, international theatre telepresence as well as tutorials on quantum and on nanotechnology, IoT and data analytics.

Learn more about how to partner with Birck or explore the nanofabrication and characterization capabilities available to Purdue researchers and external partners.