The National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) has published The National Nanotechnology Initiative Supplement to the President’s 2019 Budget. The August 2018 document not only supplements the President’s budget request for fiscal year 2019, but also serves as NNI’s annual report and addresses the requirement for Department of Defense (DOD) reporting on its nanotechnology investments. President Trump requests nearly $1.4 billion for NNI, “a continued investment in basic research, early-stage applied research, and technology transfer efforts that will lead to the breakthroughs of the future.” According to the document, the actual NNI investments are higher for 2017 than the estimated and requested levels. For example, the participating agencies reported $1.55 billion in actual NNI investments for 2017, “significantly larger than 2017 estimated investments previously published in the 2018 Budget ($1.47 billion) and 2017 requested investments published in the 2017 Budget ($1.44 billion).” The President’s 2019 budget, which requests nearly $1.4 billion for NNI, supports nanoscale science, engineering, and technology research and development (R&D) at 12 agencies. The five federal organizations with the largest investments (representing 95 percent of the total) are:
- Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)/National Institutes of Health (nanotechnology-based biomedical research at the intersection of life and physical sciences);
- National Science Foundation (fundamental research and education across all disciplines of science and engineering);
- Department of Energy (fundamental and applied research providing a basis for new and improved energy technologies);
- DOD (science and engineering research advancing defense and dual-use capabilities); and
- Department of Commerce/National Institute of Standards and Technology (fundamental R&D of measurement and fabrication tools, analytical methodologies, metrology, and standards for nanotechnology).
The report states that other agencies and agency components investing in mission-related nanotechnology research are the Consumer Product Safety Commission; HHS/Food and Drug Administration; HHS/National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health; Department of Homeland Security; Department of Justice; Department of Transportation/Federal Highway Administration; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; National Aeronautics and Space Administration; U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)/Agriculture Research Service; USDA/Forest Service; and USDA/National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Appendix A provides an overview of nanotechnology R&D by agency. The document also provides highlights illustrating progress toward each of the four NNI goals:
- Goal 1. Advance a World-Class Nanotechnology R&D Program;
- Goal 2. Foster the Transfer of New Technologies into Products for Commercial and Public Benefit;
- Goal 3. Develop and Sustain Educational Resources, a Skilled Workforce, and a Dynamic Infrastructure and Toolset to Advance Nanotechnology; and
- Goal 4. Support Responsible Development of Nanotechnology.