The global vision of a “knowledge-based economy” includes plans to maximise the potential of biotechnology for the benefit of the world economy, society and the environment.

There are new challenges in this sector including a growing demand for healthy, safe food; an increasing risk of disease; and threats to agricultural and fishery production from changing weather patterns. However, creating a bio economy is a challenging and complex process involving the convergence of different branches of science.

Nanotechnology has the potential to revolutionize the agricultural and food industry with new tools for the molecular treatment of diseases, rapid disease detection, enhancing the ability of plants to absorb nutrients etc. Smart sensors and smart delivery systems will help the agricultural industry combat viruses and other crop pathogens. In the near future nanostructured catalysts will be available which will increase the efficiency of pesticides and herbicides, allowing lower doses to be used. Nanotechnology will also protect the environment indirectly through the use of alternative (renewable) energy supplies, and filters or catalysts to reduce pollution and clean-up existing pollutants.

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Image Courtesy A. Dzurak, University of New South Wales

NQCG's primary research interest is the realization of quantum simulators capable of complex computations in the fields of nanoscience and continuum mechanics.

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NQCG is developing an open semantic e-infrastructure system and international collaborative environment for open-source research, standardization and innovation in future and emerging convergent technologies and the integration of state-of-the-art techniques of ontology design.