University of California Santa Cruz (UCSC)

University of California Santa Cruz (UCSC)
Type Disciplines
State University Nanomaterials Nanostructures Modeling Chemistry Composites Engineering Fabrication Nanomedicine Nanoparticles Quantum Dots
Address Postal Code
1156 High Street 95064
City State / Province
Santa Cruz CA
E-mail Country
Web Phone
link (831) 459-0111

The Baskin School of Engineering at the University of California Santa Cruz (UCSC) focuses synergies between nanotechnology and the areas of information technology and biotechnology.

Applied mathematics and statistics makes critical contributions to each of these areas, in addition to their contributions to programs in the social and natural sciences.


Under an agreement between the University of California and NASA, UCSC manages a national research program valued at more than $330 million. The 10-year contract, a first-of-its-kind for NASA, will establish a University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) at the NASA Ames Research Center. The UARC is conducting top-quality research, serving as a magnet for world-class researchers, and providing enhanced student research and training in science and engineering.

Theory, modeling, and simulation provide understanding of the basic physics and chemistry, including the resolution of disparate experimental results. In addition, Computational Nanotechnology can guide the formulation of experimentation and can provide a first generation design tool. All research is complementary to the NACNT’s experimental research, development, and prototyping.

The University of California system (UC), led by the Santa Cruz campus, has located its “Silicon Valley Center” in the NASA Research Park. This UC regional center will allow students and researchers to work side-by-side with NASA Ames scientists on multidisciplinary and collaborative projects in leading edge disciplines of biotechnology, information technology and nanotechnology.

The UC Silicon Valley Center will eventually encompass 600,000 square feet of classroom and office space. UCSC also plans to build a Bio-Info-Nano Research & Development Convergence Lab with classrooms. UCSC is working with NASA and Silicon Valley companies to develop plans for a permanent facility, with the UARC as the anchor tenant and its focus aligned to the interests of Silicon Valley companies.

  • Electrical Engineering Department researchers at UCSC have received $1.6 million from the NIH’s National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering to develop new sensor technology for biomedical applications. The goal is to develop a new type of instrument that can do both electrical and optical sensing of single biomolecules, with all the components of the sensor ultimately integrated onto a chip. This would be the first device to provide both electrical and optical characterization of single molecules. The team plans to integrate nanopores and liquid-core optical waveguides into the new sensor platform.
  • William Dunbar, an assistant professor of computer engineering at UC Santa Cruz, received a career development award from the National Institutes of Health. The Mentored Quantitative Research Career Development Award is designed to encourage researchers with backgrounds in quantitative science and engineering to focus on questions relating to health and disease. Dunbar, whose expertise is in the area of feedback control, will be working with faculty in the Department of Biomolecular Engineering to develop nanopore technology for high-speed DNA sequencing. He will be applying feedback control to probe and enhance the ability of a nanopore device to obtain sequence information from individual DNA molecules.

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