Thursday, September 17, 2009

NanoSonic Moving to Giles County

NanoSonic Inc., a high technology research and development company that concentrates its efforts in the field of advanced materials, is moving to EcoPark in Giles County. NanoSonic is a spin-off company of Virginia Tech's Colleges of Engineering and Science and employs 60 people.

Founded in 1998 in Blacksburg, NanoSonic emerged as the overall leader of a 13-state study about the strength of small nanotechnology businesses. NanoSonic led all nanotechnology companies in both the dollar amount of contracts received, $10,347,956, and in the total number of grants awarded to a single company, 39.

"We are extremely excited to locate in Giles County," says NanoSonic President Rick Claus, an expert in advanced materials and structures and the 2001 recipient of Virginia's Outstanding Scientist Award. "Eastern Giles County is a shortdrive from Blacksburg, and EcoPark will allow us to responsibly grow our manufacturing business with minimal impact on the environment. We rent office and research space in Blacksburg, but as we ramp up with the manufacturing of our products we needed additional space."

Giles County Board of Supervisors Chairman, Richard McCoy says, “NanoSonic is a perfect first tenant for the Wheatland EcoPark. Every community wants high tech, clean industry, and to have an announcement like this, in these economic times, is very exciting for the whole region.”
Industrial Development Authority Chairman Dr. Lee Wheeler says the EcoPark concept is one the County believes will be attractive to businesses like NanoSonic. “Our niche is to create a beautiful, low cost, easily accessible location for environmentally conscious companies to do business, and still be only minutes away from the resources available at Virginia Tech.”

The project’s architect, Michael Hedgepeth with Craddock and Cunningham in Lynchburg says the site work for the 30,000 square feet LEED-certified building is scheduled to break ground in April with completion in the summer of 2010. NanoSonic has 18 patents that encompass its processing techniques, and the basis of one of its most successful products to date, Metal Rubber. Applications for Metal Rubber are under review by a multitude of microelectronics, biomedical, aeronautical, and automotive industries.

NanoSonic received a 2006 "Nano 50" award at the NASA Tech Briefs National Nano
Engineering Conference. NASA-Tech Briefs Nano 50 awardees are considered the "best of the best" with the winners being innovative people and with designs that will move nanotechnology to key mainstream markets.

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