Nanotechnology or simply ‘nanotech’ is the engineering of matter on an atomic, molecular, and supramolecular scale. The credit of propagation of the concept of nanotechnology goes to Richard Feynman, the Nobel Prize Winner.
In his lecture, There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom, Richard Feynman described the feasibility of synthesis through the direct manipulation of atoms. Further, Richard Feynman has written that −
“I want to build a billion tiny factories, models of each other, which are manufacturing simultaneously. . . The principles of physics, as far as I can see, do not speak against the possibility of maneuvering things atom by atom. It is not an attempt to violate any laws; it is something, in principle, that can be done; but in practice, it has not been done because we are too big.”
However, in 1974, Norio Taniguchi first used the term ‘nanotechnology’. One nanometer, i.e., nm is equal to one billionth, or 10−9meter. Likewise, if we compare, then it is a typical carbon-carbon bond length, or the spacing between these atoms in a molecule, which is in the range 0.12–0.15 nm.
Let us now discuss the application of Nanotechnology in different fields.
Nanotechnology is used in the following fields of Science −
Nanotechnology is also used for the following purposes −
Making sunscreen and cosmetics
Packaging of food products (Silver nanoparticles is used in food packaging)
In disinfectants and household appliances, e.g. Silver Nano
In carbon nanotubes (for stain-resistant textiles)
In treatment of disease and prevention of health issues (Nano-medicine)
In various industries
In purification processes
In environmental cleaning up applications
In desalination of water
In water filtration
In wastewater treatment
In groundwater treatment
Also used in military goods, Nano-machining of Nano-wires, construction materials, etc.
In terms of applications, following are the major terms used in the Science of Nanotechnology −