The latest news from academia, regulators
research labs and other things of interest
Posted: September 23, 2008
Green Nano and the 21st Century Nanotechnology Act
(Nanowerk News) The reauthorization of the 21st Century Nanotechnology Act – which now includes language that supports "green nano" – was approved by the U.S. House of Representatives in June and has moved on to the Senate for action. The Senate is scheduled to consider it in September.
The act, which was signed into law in December 2003 by President Bush, authorizes funding for nanotechnology research and development.
Thanks in part to advocacy by chemistry professor Jim Hutchison, the bill now incorporates green nanotechnology language that calls for a proactive research plan to account for environmental, health and safety issues involved in nanotechnology research. In several visits to Capitol Hill over the past two years, Hutchison has urged policymakers to fund research for the development of design rules to guide development of new nanomaterials that are safer for the environment and the public.
Hutchison, a leading U.S. innovator in nanofabrication and assembly processes and a pioneer in the use of green chemistry, is a sought-after expert on issues related to nanotechnology. This breakthrough technology is expected to become a multi-trillion dollar industry in the next decade.
In December 2007, Hutchison gave a briefing for the Congressional Nanotechnolgy Caucus, a study group led by U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) and four other congressional representatives. Hutchison described the ONAMI Safer Nanomaterials and Nanomanufacturing Initiative (SNNI) approach for advancing safer nanoparticle design -- specifically, design and manufacturing strategies to remove toxic byproducts from nanoparticles and developing greener, high-throughput production methods that provide better quality nanoparticles.