Several hundred people will gather later this month at the Joint School of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering (JSNN) for a conference featuring experts from industry, government and academia who will focus on applications and opportunities for nanomanufacturing.

“NanoManufacturing 2013: Applications and Opportunities,” will be held Wednesday, Sept. 25, at JSNN on the campus of Gateway University Research Park in Greensboro. Registration is under way.

Among the keynote speakers will be Sandra Merkel-DeJames, PhD, senior manager of business creation for Novozymes. DeJames, who has extensive experience in the biotechnology industry in direct research, global technology commercialization and new business creation, works in the company’s biobusiness development and acquisition unit to create, build and launch new lines of business.

Also slated as a keynote speaker is Jack B. Hicks, a partner with Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice and adjunct professor at Elon University School of Law. A licensed patent attorney with more than 20 years of experience, Hicks counsels clients to determine the type and scope of intellectual property protection that meets their business goals. A substantial portion of his practice includes the preparation and prosecution of U.S. and foreign patent and trademark applications. He is ranked among the leading lawyers in his field by The Best Lawyers in America, North Carolina Super Lawyers and North Carolina Legal Elite.

“This conference is a real opportunity for those interested in learning more about advanced manufacturing technologies and how the application of these new technologies can help grow the manufacturing sector in North Carolina and the US”, said Joe Magno, executive director at the Center of Innovation for Nanobiotechnology (COIN).

Other speakers include:

– Robert Skillen, CEO and chief engineer of VX Aerospace, who has more than 25 years of experience in commercial and defense manufacturing and construction. A former F-14 carrier aviator, Skillen has broad technical experience in aircraft design and composite aircraft manufacturing and has designed, prototyped and manufactured many aerospace parts and assemblies.

– Dr. Jayesh Doshi, founder, president & CEO of eSpin Technologies Inc., who is leading the effort to commercialize electrospun nanofiber technology. Under Doshi’s leadership, the company has launched four nanofiber-based products: exceed® HVAC air filters, Simwypes® drywipes, Cytoweb® tissue culture media and nWeb® rolled goods. Prior to founding eSpin, he worked as senior chemist at DuPont Company.

– Miles C. Wright, chief executive officer of Xanofi Inc. A successful business and entrepreneurial leader, Wright has founded five companies and served as CEO of two others For the last six years he has worked to commercialize advance technology as Executive-in-Residence at N.C. State University

Sponsors include Greensboro Partnership, Carl Zeiss Microscopy, The Joseph M. Bryan Foundation, World Wide Medical Products Inc., BD Technologies, Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, American Elements and Red Dart.

Thus far, participants from Virginia, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Maryland, South Carolina, Georgia, Massachusetts and New York have registered for the conference.

Admission costs $195 before Sept. 16. Student admission is $40. After Sept. 16, regular admission is $250 and $60 for students. For more information and to register, visit

Story by Betsi Robinson