Nanotechnology and You


Nanotechnology is changing the world and the way we live, creating scientific advances and new products that are smaller, faster, stronger, safer, and more reliable. After about 20 years of steady progress in nanotechnology research and development, scientists in the United States and around the world have a much clearer picture of how to create nanoscale materials with properties never before envisioned. Scientists and engineers are exploring exciting new discoveries at the nanoscale every day.

Benefits and Applications

Nanotechnology research will have a significant, positive impact on our world.

Environmental, Health, and Safety Issues

The NNI and its member agencies are committed to the responsible development of nanotechnology.

Ethical, Legal, and Societal Issues

The potential societal, ethical, and legal implications of nanotechnology are an important NNI issue.

Federal Legislation & Congressional Info

Congress and the Executive Branch fund nanotechnology R&D and establish policies and regulations that affect nano-enabled products and materials.

International Engagement

Examples of multi- and bi-lateral cooperation between the U.S. and foreign governments.

Standards for Nanotechnology

Globally accepted nanotechnology standards are vital to continuing progress in research and development and eventual commercialization.


Nanotechnology Fact

The cumulative NNI investment since fiscal year 2001, including the 2017 request, now totals more than $23 billion. In addition, more than $1 billion has been invested cumulatively since 2004 in funding for nanotechnology-based small businesses through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs of the participating Federal agencies. Nanotechnology-related environmental, health, and safety (EHS, or nanoEHS) activities have become a hallmark of the NNI, with R&D, policy, and regulation in this area extensively coordinated among Federal agencies. NanoEHS activities, including relevant topics incorporated into the Nanotechnology Signature Initiatives (NSIs), account for approximately 10% of the NNI budget request from 2015-2017. Cumulative NNI EHS investments from 2006 through 2015 have now reached more than $1 billion. For more information, visit the NNI Budget page.