FEI Sponsors 2006 Safer Nano Conference

Advanced Detection and Analysis, Coupled With Proactive Industry Education,

Can Pave the Way for a Future Improved by Nanomaterials

Mar 02, 2006, 00:00 ET from FEI Company

    HILLSBORO, Ore., March 2 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- FEI Company
 (Nasdaq:   FEIC) is sponsoring the 2006 Safer Nano conference that will be held
 next week in Oregon.  The conference will focus on three specific areas:
 Safer Nano-Environmental, Health and Safety Best Practices; Cool Science, Good
 Jobs and a Healthy Environment; and ONAMI's (Oregon Nanoscience and
 Microtechnologies Institute) Safer Materials and Nanomanufacturing Kickoff.
     "Having the ability to work at the nanoscale and understand the basic
 building blocks of our world is going to result in tremendous breakthroughs
 and deliver benefits for a wide variety of products and services in both the
 short and long term," said Skip Rung, director of ONAMI. "Programs such as the
 Safer Nano conference are extremely important. As nanoscale development
 progresses, and we identify and utilize nanomaterials, it needs to be a clean,
 environment-friendly endeavor."
     Nanotechnology represents a broad range of industries and applications and
 is perhaps best explained as the scale (below 100 nm) at which most advanced
 research and product development is taking place. However, as the diverse
 nanotechnology field at large receives increasing public exposure, education
 about it and its benefits is lagging, leaving room for science fiction
 scenarios -- such as Michael Crichton's self-replicating nanobots and "grey
 goo" -- to grow in stature.
     In reality, nanoscale technologies will have a major impact on
 pharmaceutical development, disease management, advanced electronics, and new,
 longer-lasting and safer materials and coatings that will be used in a range
 of products from automobiles and airplanes, to building materials and consumer
 goods. In fact, consumers are already benefiting from nano-based technologies
 in paint finishes, cosmetics and sunscreens, stain-preventing fabric coatings
 and more.  While many of these products make use of nanoparticles, it is
 important to realize that such particles have long existed without the ability
 to detect, see, characterize and -- perhaps most importantly -- control them.
     "Advancements in enabling tools are supporting the drive into nanoscale
 research and development reaching down into the atomic scale," said Matt
 Harris, vice president of worldwide marketing for FEI Company.  "Scientists
 have never before had the ability to understand and control nanomaterials as
 they can today.  This ability, coupled with shared industry focus on safety
 and management of these materials will encourage the pursuit of nanotechnology
 to proceed safely and with rational discussion."
     Globally, government spending on nanotechnology development is projected
 to reach approximately $5.0 billion (U.S.) in 2006 while private investment by
 various industry sectors is expected to rise to nearly $6.0 billion in the
 same period.
     U.S. regulators and experts who specialize in nanotechnology have launched
 an effort they say will help minimize environmental and health risks that
 could be associated with such processes and products. The initiative is led by
 Barbara Karn, manager of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA)
 nanotechnology research program, who is a keynote speaker at next week's Safer
 Nano conference.
     "Key nanotechnology companies and researchers are taking responsibility to
 ensure that nanotech products are produced in environmentally safe ways," said
 Karn during the EPA's first GreenNano meeting on February 16.
     The Safer Nano Conference takes place March 6-7, 2006 at the Oregon
 Graduate Institute in Beaverton.  Full program and registration information
 can be found at http://www.cpd.ogi.edu/coursespecific.asp?pam=2003 .  Also
 sponsoring the event are the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies
 Institute (ONAMI), Oregon Health Science University/OGI School of Science and
 Engineering, and Kennedy/Jenks Consultants Engineers and Scientists.
     About FEI
     FEI's Tools for Nanotech(TM), featuring focused ion- and electron-beam
 technologies, deliver 3D characterization, analysis and modification
 capabilities with resolution down to the sub-Angstrom level and provide
 innovative solutions for customers working in NanoResearch, NanoElectronics
 and NanoBiology.  With R&D centers in North America and Europe, and sales and
 service operations in more than 50 countries around the world, FEI is bringing
 the nanoscale within the grasp of leading researchers and manufacturers and
 helping to turn some of the biggest ideas of this century into reality.  More
 information can be found on the FEI website at:  http://www.feicompany.com .