Billionaire Roman Abramovich revealed as $30m. Tel Aviv University donor
Constant growth has created a need for a newer, larger and more ambitious nanotechnology center, something that was made possible through Abramovich’s $30m. gift.
By GREER FAY CASHMANUpdated: JANUARY 26, 2018 00:20
What does Chelsea Football Club have in common with Tel Aviv University’s new Center for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology? The answer is Roman Abramovich, who despite his many business interests is best known as the owner of the soccer club. Abramovich also happens to be the mystery donor of TAU’s new Center for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology scheduled to open in 2020.Abramovich made his $30 million commitment to the project in 2015, but the identity of the founding donor remained secret until now.TAU launched its current Center for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology in 2000, when it was the first Israeli institute of its kind.Today the center is affiliated with more than 90 research groups from varying disciplines, and works in close collaboration with industry and research groups worldwide.Constant growth has created a need for a newer, larger and more ambitious nanotechnology center, something that was made possible through Abramovich’s $30m. gift.Once completed, the center will be one of the leading facilities of its kind in the Middle East.Well-known French architect Michel Remon is responsible for the innovative design of the new building, which will be located on the TAU campus adjacent to Beit Hatfutsot – The Museum of the Jewish People. Remon was chosen from among 128 international competitors in an open competition.The three story, 7,000 sq.m. building will house advanced facilities, including the Chaoul Center for Nanoscale Systems that will take up the entire ground floor; 16 core research laboratories, including new labs studying quantum effects; activities of the Gertner Institute for Medical Nanosystems, and the recently inaugurated Sagol Center for Smart Biotechnologies; a conference room; offices and team rooms on the upper floors; and in the basement, facility rooms and a sub-fab area beneath the state-of-the-art tools of the Chaoul Center to stabilize that facility.Special care has been taken in the architectural design to balance light and temperature inside the building. A special space will be dedicated to collaboration between the Center’s researchers and their guests. The building will also be accessible to the general public.“Nanotechnology is a game-changer that leads the way to a better future in numerous areas,” says TAU president Prof. Joseph Klafter, who is convinced that the outstanding 120 researchers and engineers who will work in the new center will provide enormous benefits for humanity in fields such as physics, chemistry, biology, medicine, life sciences and engineering.