The UK Micro and NanoTechnology Network (MNT) has initiated a MNT Quality Mark for companies involved in the nanotechnology industry.
The objective of the MNT Quality Mark is to benchmark development and implementation of best practice and to set a strict minimum standard of performance and achievement. The new MNT Quality Mark initiative follows the recent announcement that the UK was awarded the Chair and Secretariat of the International Organisation for Standardisation's (ISO) technical committee for nanotechnologies.
Through this committee, the UK can further support this emerging discipline and use standardisation to help ensure its successful global growth.
In an inaugural UK pilot, five companies achieved this "Seal of Approval" and will receive their awards at the end of September. William Pedder, Chief Executive of UKTI, says, "The MNT Quality Mark is a key milestone for the UK nanotechnology industry. It strengthens our position as a world leader in innovation and standardisation. It will be vital to help businesses act responsibly in maximising nanotechnology and gain a competitive advantage in a global marketplace."
Professor Hugh Clare, Director of the Micro and Nanotechnology Network, adds that "the launch of the MNT network in 2003 has seen the nanotechnology industry rapidly evolve and expand in the UK. The Government investment support, such as that provided by UK Trade & Investment, MNT network, and the Regional Development Agencies, ensures that the UK is set to remain at the forefront of the global nanotechnology sector."
The global market for nanotechnology is forecast to exceed $1000 billion within the decade.
The UK Government is investing heavily in collaborative research and a new network of micro and nanotechnology facilities.