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What Is Nanotechnology?

Autor:   •  August 20, 2019  •  Research Paper  •  750 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,848 Views

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What is nanotechnology?

  • Nanotechnology is the control and understanding of matter at the nanoscale, meaning dimensions between approximately 1 and 100 nanometres.
  • Matter, including solids liquids and gases may show unusual physical, biological and chemical properties at the nanoscale that differ from the properties that bulk materials exhibit

Differences in the nanoscale and bulk materials

  • When particles are created with the dimensions of about 1-100 nanometres, the materials properties will significantly change from the properties as a bulk material (properties are size dependent in this scale range)
  •  nanoscale gold 🡪 
  • not yellow colour, at the Nano scale appear red or purple
  • motion of gold electrons confined at nanoscale, so react   differently with light. This allows gold particles to selectively accumulate in tumours where they can enable both precise imaging and targeted laser destruction of tumour. (avoid harming healthy cells)
  • The increased surface area to volume ratio in nanostructured materials leads to increased reactivity as well as better catalysts (bringing in billion dollars of revenue in the oil and chemical industries)

Benefits and applications

  • Nanoscale films on glasses (eyes), and computers makes them water repellent, residue repellent, self-cleaning, antifog and many more
  • Ultra-high definition tv’s use quantum dots to make them more energy efficient and produce more vibrant colours
  • Better medical imaging tools are being made possible via nanotechnology leading to earlier diagnosis and better treatment options
  • Used to develop new batteries that charge quicker and are more efficient
  • Could lead to low cost clean drinking water

Nanowires and carbon nanotubes

  • Nanowires – wires with a very small diameter (can be as small as 1nm)
  • Carbon nanotube – Nano-size cylinder of carbon atoms


Define the terms nanoscale, nanoparticles, nanotubes, nanomaterials and nanotechnology:

  • Nanoscale - the size range roughly 1 to 100 nanometres, where many of the fundamental structures of biology are formed, composite materials may take on their distinctive characteristics, and many important physical phenomena are found.
  • Nanoparticles- a particle that has one structural unit of less than 100nm
  • Nanotubes – A Nano-sized cylinder
  • Nanomaterials – Materials of which a single unit is sized between 1 to 1000 nanometres
  • Nanotechnology - design, characterization, production and application of structures, devices and systems by controlling shape and size at the nanoscale

Give examples of how the properties of nanoparticles may differ to bulk materials. Present this information in a table:



Bulk materials


Greater hardness

Lower hardness

Melting point

Lower melting point

Higher melting point

Surface area to volume ratio

Greater surface area to volume ratio

Lower surface area to volume ratio


Decreased malleability

Increased malleability


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