Environmental, Health, and Safety Research Needs for Engineered Nanoscale Materials, September 2006

Subject Area:
NNI Publications and Reports
EHS-related Documents
Author: Nanoscale Science, Engineering and Technology Subcommittee, Committee on Technology, National Science and Technology Council
Publication Date: Sep. 20 2006

Description:

Identifies for the Federal Government environmental, health, and safety (EHS) research and information needs related to understanding and management of potential risks of engineered nanoscale materials that may be used, for example, in commercial or consumer products, medical treatments, environmental applications and research.  Intended for use by NSTC’s Nanoscale Science, Engineering, and Technology (NSET) Subcommittee and Federal agencies to inform and guide research programs.  Also gives nongovernment stakeholders approaches for obtaining the knowledge and understanding necessary to enable risk assessment and management of nanomaterials.  Industry producers and users of nanomaterials, for example, may use the document to inform their own research, risk assessment and risk management activities.


Nanotechnology Fact

Nanotechnology encompasses science, engineering, and technology at the nanoscale, which is about 1 to 100 nanometers. Just how small is that? A nanometer is one-billionth of a meter. For reference, a sheet of paper is about 100,000 nanometers thick. Nanoscale matter can behave differently than the same bulk material. For example, a material’s melting point, color, strength, chemical reactivity, and more may change at the nanoscale.

Researchers seeking to understand the fundamentals of properties at the nanoscale may call their work nanoscience; those focused on effective use of the properties may call their work nanoengineering. Encompassing nanoscale science, engineering, and technology, nanotechnology involves imaging, measuring, modeling, and manipulating matter at the nanoscale.

Learn more in the Nano 101 section.

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