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What is Nanotechnology?

What is Nanotechnology?
« on: 10 June , 2019, 18:10:39 pm »
Hello everyone,

I am Javier Herrero, a spanish student who attended to the 5th IYSC celebrated in Copenhaguen and would be a veteran of this edition. I have been almost two years since now investigating about nanotechnology and its applications on our actual society, therefore I would like to help those who are new in the fascinating "nanoworld" to begin their research as better as possible. I am sure that most of you do not know exactly what is nanotechnology, or how is applied nowadays, and I am sure you would discover the most incredible innovations that this technology can bring up.

I could actually give you an introduction to the topic, talking about who this technology actually works and how is applied. However, in the IYSC we want our participants to be self-sufficient and use critical thinking when looking for information and writing their essays. Instead of giving you the work already done, I would like to suggest some questions you would need to answer in order to understand nanotechnology and the applications it has in the enviromental science and engineering.

One of the most ussual questions is, what is the nanoscale? Furthermore, you should also look for the properties of nanoscale materials and the physical laws these particles are subjected to. You ought to look also about the differences between nanoscience and nanotechnology and the most common nanomaterials. I have already introduced different concepts that would be essetial to understand for the development of your future projects.

Finally I wanted to encourage you to take advantage of this incredible experience; I am sure that you would all enjoy it!

All the best with your projects!
Javier Herrero, Veteran.

Re: What is Nanotechnology?
« Reply #1 on: 30 June , 2019, 20:02:04 pm »
Hello Javier,

I really think this is a very interesting point. First of all, we need to difference nanotechnology from nanoscience. They are two very similar concepts, but also very different.

Every day, we listen about new investigations related with the nanoworld. And we use terms like nanomaterials, nanoparticles... as if we were familiar to them. But, we really know what they mean?

Nanotechnology and nanoscience go hand in hand. Nanotechnology uses the nanoscience to build new structures, materials...

To give a definition, nanotechnology is the development and the study of sistems and materials in a nanometric scale. Its objective is to controle everything in nanoscale. It has solutions to a big quantity of environmental problems, energetics and even health problems, here we can find the nanomedicine.

And nanoscience is the study of the fundamental processes that occurs in structures from 1 to 100 nonometers.

Finally, when we think about nanotechnology and nanoscience, there come to our minds many terms which begin with 'nano'. Nano is a prefix that means very small, dwarf. It corresponds to one billionth part of a meter,  with other words: 10-9 meters.

In case it has not been clear enough, I'll let a link bellow with more information

https://www.nano.gov/nanotech-101/what/definition
Here, you can find a lot of information about the nanoworld. You can look for everything related with nanotechnology and its beginnings.

Hope it serves you all
Laia  ;)

Re: What is Nanotechnology?
« Reply #2 on: 27 July , 2019, 21:08:43 pm »
Hello Laia,

Firstly, I would like to congratulate you to begin sharing information from your research through the blog. Using this platform enables communication among participants from all over the world and can be really helpful either to know more about the topic or to decide how to focus the final essay.

The concepts you have briefly introduced would actually be essential in your journey through the fascinating nano-world. Therefore, those who doesn't know clearly the difference between nanotechnology and nanoscience, what is the nanoscale or what is a nanomaterial I would highly recommed you to investigate about it by your own and ask any doubts through this page; other participants or even veterans if necessary would help you. By the way, I would like to remind you that veterans should only help you how to focus one topic; how to improve one post or oustanding concepts or parts they find important, without giving important information, this information should be found by you! Therefore, you shouldn't expect us to solve you "theory doubts" unless anyone else answers.

However, I couldn't find something in Laia's post that I find essential when introducing the nanoworld and its incredible propierties: why does the nanoscale give materials those incredible and unique behaviours? You would easily answer this question when investigating about an specific field within physics that study the smallest particles and their interactions. I would really appreciate if someone could introduce us to this new way of understanding physics giving us the name of this type of physics and explaining the main and more basic aspects this physics are based on.

Good luck with your research!
Javier Herrero, Veteran.

Re: What is Nanotechnology?
« Reply #3 on: 13 August , 2019, 19:07:29 pm »
Hello Javier,

I think that it is important to know what range the nanoscale covers. Generally, the nanoscale is defined from 1 to 100 nm so nanoscale materials, or nanomaterials, are materials where at least one relevant length scale is within the range of nanometres. These materials usually have very different properties from their bulk counterparts, due to the importance of quantum and surface boundary effects.
Some examples of nanomaterials are carbon nanotube, nanoparticle, metal rubber, quantum dots, nanopores and many more.

Regarding the question: why does the nanoscale give materials those incredible and unique behaviours? It's all because of the change in surface to volume ratio. Particles behave differently because of the shift in this ratio which reflects on its structural properties and also many others like absorbance. Due to the change in its absorbency, it might change it's color when reduce to nano scale.

MarĂ­a :)

Re: What is Nanotechnology?
« Reply #4 on: 18 August , 2019, 13:25:18 pm »
Hello everyone again!

First of all, I wanted to thank Maria's contribution to this topic, as she has introduced some new concepts essential to understand nanotechnology as a whole. Maria has talked about the "quantum effects" and "size effects" that give nanoparticles those special properties and are, in fact, the basis of nanotechnology.

About the size effects we have already talked in this topic and in other posts, therefore is not necessary to continue expanding this topic through the blog (nevertheless, when writing your essays it would be really interesting if you talk about these size effects). What I have detected is that anyone has talked about how nanoparticles are affected by the physics of quantum mechanics. As understanding the quantum world is quite difficult, I invite you to do a quick research and share through the blog some of the most basic principles of this physics. How do particles behave in the quantum world? How can we relate the importance of working with the nanoscale and this peculiar physics?

Good luck with your research!
Javier Herrero, Veteran.