The innovative project of Nanoeducation held by the Russian Government follows up. Under the contract of the Ministry of Education and Science 96 School classrooms in the Russian Federation will be equipped with the sets of training Scanning Probe Microscopes NANOEDUCATOR. Earlier these tools have already been installed in Russian universities. Such a program have no parallels in the Western countries and very helpful for young investigators in getting a foretaste of nanotechnology at early education stages. All the commitments of delivery and installation of NANOEDUCATORs fulfill the innovative nanotech company NT-MDT Co.
The installation of NANOEDUCATOR in educational institutions under the Russian Government contract began in 2008. The idea went from the Ministry of Education and Science who devoted funds to this large-scale project and brought it to life. And since then tens and hundreds of Russian students have had the real opportunity to enter the nanoscale world.
Nowadays about 200 NANOEDUCATOR classes have already been installed worldwide. Among them about 130 were planted according to the Government contract, the other - at private initiatives of universities, colleges, and research laboratories. If earlier the Government contracted establishing of NANOEDUCATORs only in universities, now they are available to schools. In accordance with the Government contract of 2009 NT-MDT Co. has already delivered 96 sets and in these very days the specialists of NT-MDT Co. are installing them.
In general, the Government initiative in the nanoeducational process in Russia takes the positive results. Many favorable responses were received and today we can see the first students' scientific works. It should be noted that at the end of May 2010 NT-MDT Co. will hold an international conference devoted to the results of NANOEDUCATORs usage and sharing the nanoeducation experience. A score of professors, lecturers and investigators from different countries will come to this event. So it is obvious that the successful initiative of the Russian Government in the nanoeducation field is worth being further developed.
And now, what is the NANOEDUCATOR?
It is a scientific training complex with a set of learning aids and accessories for introducing nanotechnology to students and giving them a basic understanding of working with nanoscale objects. NANOEDUCATOR is a students' oriented SPM, their key to the minuscule world, suitable for even first-time microscope users, which can navigate through the step-by-step operation. This device is designed to capture the students' interest in science and train future nanotechnologists using both AFM and STM techniques. Usually the training class is equipped with three to five student working places (SPM devices with computers) and an additional computer for a teacher's workstation. All devices are networking and can be fully controlled from the teacher's computer. Even long-distance control can be achieved through wireless protocols.
NANOEDUCATOR provides an interdisciplinary education with a broad understanding of different areas of nanoscience. Owing to such approach, cells, viruses, bacteria can be investigated as well as metals, semiconductors, dielectrics, polymers, etc. NANOEDUCATOR, perfectly suited for secondary schools as well as for higher education, opens student minds for new means of nanoeducation and allows creating the scientific training laboratory equipped with several networking complexes. Class of NANOEDUCATORs is a cost-effective solution for practical training sessions. The main principle of NANOEDUCATOR as a training tool is "Plug and Play" - the installation is quick and the instrument is ready for work immediately. The educational complex contains textbooks and set of laboratory works that makes the use of the tool much easier for teachers as well as for students.