Tiny Tech #2: The Impact of Nanotechnology

Today from the world of Tiny Tech:

We live in a world of change, and the technology that surrounds us is changing especially fast.  One important contributor is something called nanotechnology.  Simply stated, nanotechnology is the manufacture of objects from parts that are almost as small as individual atoms.

Chemists have been making nanoscale objects for over 150 years – long before the term "nanotechnology" came into use – and the resulting impact on our lives has been immense.  For example, chemically manufactured antibiotics and fertilizers have saved the lives of millions of people.

Now scientists and engineers are trying to extend nanotechnology to other kinds of manufacturing.  This kind of nanotechnology still is mostly in the research laboratory.  But the ability to exert precise control over the positions of atoms and molecules has already led to all sorts of things – such as stronger tennis racquets, invisible sunscreen lotions, and longer lasting batteries. 

And in the more distant future, nanotechnology could lead to the ultimate in fast computers.  No one really knows who was the first to say, “The future isn’t what it used to be.” But the statement is certainly true, and one reason is: nanotechnology.

Tiny Tech is made possible by the National Science Foundation and WUFT.  To learn more about Tiny Tech, go to tinytechradio.org.

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