Nanotechnology: Things You Didn't Know About
- By that definition, we have been doing nanotech for centuries. For instance, the colors in medieval stained glass windows result from nanocrystals created in the heating and cooling of the glass.
- Size matters. At the nano scale, materials take on unusual properties. Their color, transparency, and melting point often differ significantly from those of larger clumps of the same stuff.
- This approach is already being used at sites in a dozen states, mostly to clean groundwater fouled by solvents, metals, and petroleum.
- Analysts say the global market for manufactured goods using nanomaterials could hit $1.6 trillion by 2013.
- And in a University of Southern California lab, nanotubes have been used to create synthetic neurons (pdf).
- Eigler and his team later used 35 xenon atoms to spell out “IBM,” thus performing the world’s smallest PR stunt.
- Not to be outdone, Stanford scientists used scanning tunneling microscopy and holograms to write information within the interference patterns formed by electron waves on a copper sheet. The letters are less than a third the size of Eigler’s “IBM.”
- For the rodent who has everything. Georgia Tech scientists made piezoelectric generators out of nanowires and attached them to tiny hamster jackets. When the critters ran, the generators created electricity.
- Get small. A nanometer is about the width of a strand of DNA; if you design, build, or use functional systems smaller than 100 of these, you’re a nanotechnologist.
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