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Posted: Aug 31, 2016
Nanotechnology: The future is tiny
(Nanowerk Spotlight) "Nanotechnology: The Future is Tiny" puts a spotlight on some of the scientists who are pushing the boundaries of technology and it gives examples of their work and how they are advancing knowledge one little step at a time.
Written by Nanowerk's Michael Berger, this book is a collection of essays about researchers involved in all facets of nanotechnologies. Nanoscience and nanotechnology research are truly multidisciplinary and international efforts, covering a wide range of scientific disciplines such as medicine, materials sciences, chemistry, biology and biotechnology, physics and electronics.
Each of the following stories is based on a scientific paper that has been published in a peer-reviewed journal. Although each story revolves around one or two scientists who were interviewed for this book, many, if not most, of the scientific accomplishments covered here are the result of collaborative efforts by several scientists and research groups, often from different organizations and from different countries.
Where will nanotechnology take us?
These stories take you on a journey of scientific discovery into a world so small that it is not open to our direct experience. While our five senses are doing a reasonably good job at representing the world around us on a macro-scale, we have no existing intuitive representation of the nanoworld, ruled by laws entirely foreign to our experience. This is where molecules mingle to create proteins; where you wouldn't recognize water as a liquid; and where minute morphological changes would reveal how much 'solid' things such as the ground or houses are constantly vibrating and moving.
You will catch a glimpse of how diverse, wide-ranging and intriguing this research field is and what kind of amazing and exciting materials and applications nanotechnologies have in store for us and where nanotechnology can be used in the future.
We will showcase 176 very specific research projects that are taking place in laboratories around the world and you will meet the scientists who developed the theories, conducted the experiments, and built the new materials and devices that each will take us one tiny step further into our nanotechnology-influenced future.
Some stories are more like an introduction to nanotechnology, some are about understanding current developments, and some are advanced technical discussions of leading edge research. Reading this book will shatter the monolithic term “nanotechnology” into the myriad of facets that it really is.
Major technology shifts don’t happen overnight; and rarely are they the result of a single breakthrough discovery. Nowhere is this more true than for the vast set of capabilities that we have come to simply call nanotechnology.
Nanotechnology is not an industry; nor is it a single technology or a single field of research. What we call nanotechnology consists of sets of enabling technologies applicable to many traditional industries (therefore it is more appropriate to speak of nanotechnologies in the plural).
Rather than standing on the shoulders of a few intellectual giants, nanotechnologies get created by tens of thousands of researchers and scientists working on minute and sometimes arcane aspects of their fields of expertise in a multitude of areas; they come from different science backgrounds; live in different parts of the world; work for different organizations (government labs, industry labs, universities, private research facilities) and follow their own set of rules ? get papers reviewed and published; achieve scientific recognition from their peers; struggle to get funding for new ideas; look to make that breakthrough discovery that leads to the ultimate resumé item, a nobel prize; get pushed by their funders to secure patent rights and commercialize new discoveries.
The collection of stories in this book is barely scratching the surface of the vast and growing body of research that leads us into the nanotechnology age. The selection presented here is not meant to rank some labs and scientists higher than others, nor to imply that the work introduced in this book is more important or valuable than the vastly larger body of work that is not covered. The intention is to give the interested reader an idea of the incredibly diverse aspects that make up nanotechnology research and development — the results of which will bring about a new era of industrial and medical technologies.
The development of nanotechnologies is not based on a few big and bold discoveries or inventions. Rather it is a painstakingly slow journey of gradual development; at result of which will be some truly revolutionary products and applications.