Since 2007, the CINN has developed projects based on optimising materials for usage in sectors as diverse as medicine, the textile industry and defence. | The work performed by the centre has led to the granting of numerous patents.
Asturias has become an international benchmark in scientific research in industries. One of the main reasons is the presence in the region, since 2007, of the Nanomaterials and Nanotechnology Research Center (CINN), which targets the development, characterisation and full understanding of new multifunctional materials on nano, micro and macro scales.
The aim was to overcome the limitations of current materials and processes. They have achieved this. The applications are diverse, and have been of particular benefit to sectors such as biomedicine, biotechnology, industry, textile and defence.
One of CINN’s most outstanding projects is closely linked to the health sector and prostheses. These prostheses need to be replaced after a certain amount of time due to natural wear. The work and research undertaken by CINN based on nanomaterials, aim to improve the biological and mechanical performance of the implantation, increasing its lifetime.
A clear example is that of dental implants: Frameworks in zirconia that aim for the optimum biological, aesthetic and mechanical properties to improve the lifetime of the piece and the wellbeing of the patient.
This kind of research has led to CINN being awarded some twenty patents, all related to the development of nano-structured ceramic materials. In fact, the IP NANOKER project, named Structural Ceramic Nanocomposites for Top-End Functional Applications, was among the ten finalists (out of 9000), chosen by the European Commission, to be put forward for the European “Best Project Award”, given that it had generated knowledge that led to the granting of these international patents for application in:
- Regenerative medicine, through the commercialisation of life-long lasting implants.
- Citizen protection regarding microorganisms, through the development of low-cost environmentally-friendly biocides.
- Cutting tools with metallic nano-crystals that achieve diamond-hardness.
- Nano-coverings for engines that led to a reduction in emissions and fuel consumption.
- Aerial security with new transparent and ultra-resistant ceramic materials for infrared countermeasure systems.
- Satellites mirrors and optic components that allow for the production of nanometric sized chips, characterised by their dimensional stability and ultra low thermal expansion.