Nanoscience and Nanotechnology:
the Science of the Small
Imagine your life being saved by a custom-designed medical machine made from particles 50,000 times as small as a single strand of your hair.
You've just imagined a future that's much closer than you think, thanks to nanotechnology research underway at Georgia Tech and around the world.
Nanotechnology, whose prefix "nano" comes from the Greek word "nanos" and represents one-billionth of a unit, utilizes nanoscience, the "science of the small," to manipulate systems at the level of atoms, molecules, and supramolecular structures.
Control of matter at the nanoscale already plays an important role in scientific disciplines as diverse as physics, chemistry, materials science, biology, medicine, engineering, and computer simulation. Nanoscience and nanotechnology have the ability to fundamentally change the way almost everything is designed and manufactured, from automobile tires and tennis racquets to air purifiers and life-saving vaccines. Some of the most common visions of a nanotechnology-fueled future are tiny body-examining cameras that can be swallowed like pills, supercomputers 500 times more powerful than those currently available, and chips the size of sugar cubes capable of storing the entire content of the Library of Congress.
Although nanoscience and nanotechnology affect all areas of life, until recently, they were primarily concerned with electronics, manufacturing, supercomputers, and data storage devices. Recently, nanoscientists have broadened the application of nanotechnology. To produce new kinds of corrosive-protective and wear-resistant coatings for windows, cars, machines, and planes, researchers are working on making existing products more efficient, from more effective sunscreen and hair dyes to a new breed of thin-film lithium-ion batteries. Near-future nanotechnology applications include more efficient fuel and solar cells, the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions in cars, and a new world of sensors in a variety of fields, from bioterrorism to biotechnology.
Georgia Tech is one of the world leaders in nanoscience and nanotechnology research and design. More than one hundred faculty members at Tech are already involved in nanoscience and nanotechnology research projects, and their numbers are growing. This Web site explores nanoscience and nanotechnology innovations, current trends in nanotechnology research, and academic opportunities in nanoscience and nanotechnology at Tech. In short, consider this your portal into a magical new world of potential.