Nanotechnology is science at the molecular level. Like biotechnology and information technology, it is a growth industry with the potential to greatly change the world in which we live. Nanosystems engineering can be considered the branch of engineering that deals with the design, development and characterization of materials, devices, and systems in the range of 1-100 nanometers (1 nanometer is a billionth of a meter), as well as their integration with macroscale devices and systems.
Louisiana Tech's Nanosystems Engineering Program was established on February 24th, 2005 by the Louisiana Board of Regents and is the first Nanosystems Engineering program in the U.S. Our college chose to pursue the development of this innovative program to prepare graduates with the knowledge and skills to integrate basic nanoscale science and engineering fundamentals in order to produce useful technology for society. Louisiana Tech University is well recognized in micro and nano education and was ranked 3rd in education in this field among U.S. institutions by the May/June 2006 SmallTimes magazine survey. The Nanosystems Engineering degree from Louisiana Tech University is an ABET accredited engineering degree, which makes it unique from all other undergraduate nanoscale/nanoengineering degree programs.
The program draws upon the strengths of our unique combination of laboratory resources and interdisciplinary research, education, and support programs. The curriculum utilizes the college's integrated freshman and sophomore engineering curricula while providing specialized courses in nanotechnology materials, measurement, and fabrication techniques in the upper level curriculum. The curriculum includes a capstone experience on nanosystems engineering tied to ongoing nanotechnology-related research projects at the university's research center, the Institute for Micromanufacturing. The program offers students the choice to select an engineering application focus area from biomedical, chemical, electrical, or mechanical.
To date, our program has produced 56 graduates and has a current enrollment of about 50 students. The majority of our graduates have chosen to pursue advanced degrees (M.S. or Ph.D. in engineering areas) and have been admitted to prestigious institutions such as the University of Albany Nanotechnology College, Georgia Institute of Technology, Rice University, Oxford University, and University of California - Berkeley. A few of our graduates have entered into industrial positions utilizing their engineering backgrounds as well. In our most recent alumni survey conducted in June 2014, the average salary of our graduates working in industry is $88,000.
The nanosystems engineering degree at Louisiana Tech provides a solid background in engineering fundamentals in addition to specific knowledge and skills related to the application and use of nanotechnology.