Kolkata: Nandini Bhandaru, a PhD student at IIT-Kharagpur, has bagged the European Materials Research Society's (E-MRS's) Young Scientist Award for her contribution to materials science, the institute said on Monday. Nandini won the award at E-MRS's 2016 Spring Meeting based on her outstanding contribution to materials science and nanotechnology, particularly nano-patterning of soft films and surfaces, said an IIT-Kharagpur statement. She works at the Instability and Soft Patterning Laboratory of IIT-Kharagpur. Her area of doctoral research is nano-fabrication, including soft-lithography, thin film dewetting, polymer blend films and self-assembly, the statement said. Nano-fabrication and nano-patterning entail developing methods to manufacture nano-materials, or pattern materials on a nanometre scale. Nano-lithography is a common method used in nano-patterning. Topographically patterned polymer films and surfaces find wide application in organic electronics, organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs), opto-electronic devices, thin film transistors (TFTs), plastic solar cells, biological sensors microfluidics, smart and super adhesives, data storage media, lab-on-a-chip devices, surfaces for nano-biotechnology applications such as patterned substrates for probing of cell behaviour, etc. The innovation by Nandini proposes the possibility of fabricating nano-scale patterned surfaces, which may act as the "mother board" for many of the devices and applications listed above at an extremely low cost and using an inherently simple methodology, the statement said. "The technique developed has been fully stabilized and patented and can be commercialised with minimal capital investment. With this technique, the fabrication costs of these surfaces can be reduced to one tenth of the current photolithography or electron beam lithography based methods which require high end expensive instrumentation," added the statement.