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Graphic element Research > Growth > Research projects > Materials & technologies projects > Nanotechnology: a small science with a huge potential
Graphic element Nanotechnology: a small science with a huge potential

Current Applications

Commercial nanotechnology products are already available and include new semi-conductor lasers and computer hard disk drives based on giant magneto-resistance. Novel materials, too, are being marketed, such as sunburn lotions containing ultraviolet-absorbing nanoparticles, and spectacles with scratch-resistant nanocoatings. The bio-chip arrays currently being produced are revolutionising the design and output of gene analysis in the fields of biotechnology and biomedicine.

But most important of all, nanotechnology is the one area of research and development which is truly multidisciplinary. Through nanotechnology, materials scientists, mechanical and electronic engineers and medical researchers are now teaming up with biologists, physicists and chemists. Research at the nanoscale frontier is unified by the need to share knowledge, tools and techniques, and expertise on atomic and molecular interactions. Powerful new concepts and capabilities, such as atomic-scale imaging and manipulation, self-assembly, and biological structure-function relationships, together with increasingly powerful computing tools, are rapidly converging from different research fields to enable nanotechnology to progress and researchers to expand their expertise into new areas and capabilities.

The 'novel multi-disciplines' and the resulting synergism may lead to futuristic novel materials and medical devices which, until now, have been the stuff of science fiction.

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Current applications
Potential for the future
Nanotechnology in Europe
European Research Area
Trans-Atlantic co-operation on nanotechnology
Major EU-funded nanotechnology projects

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