The provincial government confirmed speculation Friday that the University of Alberta has been chosen as the new national headquarters for nanotechnology research.

The funding of $120-million from the federal and Alberta governments will go toward the creation of a new, state-of-the art research facility. It plans to employ 200 scientists.

Some analysts predict nanotechnology will revolutionize the world in the same way computers have.

The technology involves working with materials at the tiniest molecular and even atomic levels.

David Lynch, the dean of engineering at the university, says basing the institute here will be a huge boost to the province.

"This will make Alberta truly an international hub for nanotechnology work," he says

There are approximately five other major international initiatives, two or three in the United States, one in Europe, and one in Asia.

Lynch says the new centre will help make Alberta a world leader in nanotechnology developments which include computers that run a thousand, or a million times faster than they do today and cancer treatments at the cellular level which don't have harmful side-effects.