What is Nano Technology ?


Nano Technology


According to chemistry, everything is made of atoms and molecules. The clothes we wear, the gadgets we use,  the food we eat, the water we drink, the medicines that cure our disease, the wires in our homes etc. each and everything is made up of atoms and molecules. In fact it is considered as the smallest unit of matter.

Therefore, in order to alter the properties of any material there is a need to make changes in its molecular arrangement i.e. how the atoms and molecules are arranged? For enhanced properties, we need to do manipulations at the molecular level because materials reduced to nano scales can show different properties when compared to what they exhibit at a macro scale. There comes the concept of Nano technology.


Nano technology
Image source : Google


In simple words, Nano technology is the technology which allows modifications of matter at atomic, molecular and super molecular scale. In general, it is the manipulation of matter with at least one dimension sized from 1 nanometer to 100 nanometer (1 nanometer =10-9 meter).

The example to show that the properties may change at nano scale includes transparency of copper (which is an opaque material), catalytic nature of gold (which is an inert material), solubility of gold (which is normally insoluble) and many more.

The technology is very broad and includes a number of fields of science such as surface science, organic chemistry, molecular biology, semiconductor physics, micro fabrication, molecular engineering etc.

The term Nano technology is now used for all the technologies and research where production is done at nano scale such as in electronics it is known as nano-electronics and so on. There are two main approaches to produce an object using nano technology. These include Top-Down approach and Bottom-Up approach. In bottom-up approach the materials and devices are created by assembling molecules chemically by using principles of molecule recognition. Whereas, in top-down approach the objects are created from larger objects without doing changes at molecular level.


Nano technology
Image Source : Google

There is wide range of products available in market today developed using the nano technology. This includes gecko tape, surface coating, paints and furniture varnishes, cosmetics, clothing, silver in food packaging, disinfectants and household appliances. Other applications have been made to improve the quality and performance of products such as tennis ball to last longer, golf balls to fly straighter and even bowling ball to become more durable and have a harder surface. Trousers and socks are also designed using nanotechnology so that they will last longer and also keep people cool in summer. Computer chips become cheaper and memory size increased.

In fact, all the areas of production can use this technology to improve the overall quality of the product.


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