Nanotechnology for the Environment. Tina Masciangioli AAAS Environmental Science and Technology Policy Fellow National Center for Environmental Research (NCER) U.S.EPA. Nanotechnology and the Environment.
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AAAS Environmental Science and Technology Policy Fellow
National Center for Environmental Research (NCER)
“The emerging fields of nanoscience and nanoengineering are leading to unprecedented understanding and control over the fundamental building blocks of all physical things. This is likely to change the way almost everything - from vaccines to computers to automobile tires to objects not yet imagined - is designed and made.”
- Interagency Working Group on Nanoscience, Engineering, and Technology Report (1999)
Cadmium sulfide (CdS) “Quantum dots”
Are there more benign precursor materials or synthetic methods that can be used to make the quantum dots?
Enter the environment
Will it be possible to recover the quantum dots for reuse?
Are there measures that can be taken now to minimize or avoid the negative impact quantum dots (or other nanotechnologies) may have on the environment?
How are these semiconductor nanoparticles being introduced to their target?
“As EPA looks to the future, it will need to employ innovative approaches and sound science to investigate complex, interdisciplinary problems in environmental protection.”
- EPA FY 2001 Annual Report
J. E. Hutchison and coworkers, Superlattices and Microstructures, Vol. 00, No. 0,2000
Treatment & Remediation
End-of-pipe management and cleanup of pollution
* Elliot and Zhang ES&T2001, 35, 4922-4926
Dual role of ZnO semicondouctor film as a sensor and photocatalyst
Kamat, P.V, et al. J.Phys.Chem. B2002, 106,788-794.
Single Molecule Detection
• Process control, compliance and ecosystem monitoring, and data/information interfaces.
Need to be
• Low cost, rapid, precise, and ultra sensitive.
• Operated remotely and continuously, in situ, andin real time.
IBM--Berger et al., Science 1997 June 27; 276: 2021-2024
Science and Engineering approaches are needed that offer new capabilities to prevent or treat highly toxic or persistent pollutants, and that result in the more effective monitoring of pollutants or their impact in ways not currently possible.
Nanoscience, engineering, and technology holds great potential for the continued improvement of technologies for environmental protection. The recent breakthroughs in creating nanocircuitry, give further evidence and support the predictions that nanoscale science and engineering “will most likely produce the breakthroughs of tomorrow.”
BUT the environmental implications (nano in the environment) need to be considered as we consider nano for the environment.