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Nanotechnology: A Gentle Introduction to the Next Big Idea

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Nanotechnology: A Gentle Introduction to the Next Big Idea


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  • Copyright 2003
  • Dimensions: 6" x 9"
  • Pages: 208
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-101400-5
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-101400-8

Nanotech for everyone! The friendly, non-technical guide to the next industrial revolution.

  • Discover the world's next $1 trillion industry!
  • The easy-to-understand guide to nanoscale technology, science, business, and ethics
  • Today's hottest nanotech research and tomorrow's hottest applications
  • Nanobots, quantum and DNA computing, nanosensors, neuro-electronic interfaces, and much more
  • Insider's assessment of the nanotechnology marketplace and investment opportunities

By 2015, nanotechnology could be a $1 trillion industry. Now, renowned nanotech pioneer Mark Ratner and technology entrepreneur Daniel Ratner show you how nanotech works, why it's so exciting, what's new, and what's next. They survey the entire field—technology and business—covering nanobots, molecular electronics, quantum computing, biostructures, nanotubes, molecular motors, nanosensors, and many other breakthrough applications. They provide easy-to-understand explanations of every key concept, plus dozens of visuals that bring nanotechnology to life. Coverage includes:

  • A simple, brief, almost math-free introduction to nanotech science
  • "Grand tour" of nanotech R&D, from "smart materials" to DNA computing
  • Breakthrough biomedical applications, including neuro-electronic interfaces and new drug delivery systems
  • Current and emerging nanotech systems for optoelectronics and communications
  • Nanotech here and now: nano-enhanced tennis balls, suntan lotions, and other products already in the market
  • A realistic assessment of nanotech investment opportunities for the short- and long-term
  • Ethical issues associated with nanotech research and product development

Sample Content

Downloadable Sample Chapter

Click here for a sample chapter for this book: 0131014005.pdf

Table of Contents


1. Introducing Nano.

Why Do I Care About Nano? Who Should Read This Book? What Is Nano? A Definition. A Note on Measures.

2. Size Matters.

A Different Kind of Small. Some Nano Challenges.

3. Interlude One-The Fundamental Science Behind Nanotechnology.

Electrons. Atoms and Ions. Molecules. Metals. Other Materials. Biosystems. Molecular Recognition. Electrical Conduction and Ohm's Law. Quantum Mechanics and Quantum Ideas. Optics.

4. Interlude Two: Tools of the Nanosciences.

Tools for Measuring Nanostructures. Scanning Probe Instruments. Spectroscopy. Electrochemistry. Electron Microscopy. Tools to Make Nanostructures. The Return of Scanning Probe Instruments. Nanoscale Lithography. Dip Pen Nanolithography. E-Beam Lithography. Nanosphere Liftoff Lithography. Molecular Synthesis. Self-Assembly. Nanoscale Crystal Growth. Polymerization. Nanobricks and Building Blocks. Tools to Imagine Nanoscale Behaviors. NanoCAD.

5. Points and Places of Interest: The Grand Tour.

Smart Materials. Sensors. Nanoscale Biostructures. Energy Capture, Transformation, and Storage. Optics. Magnets. Fabrication. Electronics. Electronics Again. Modeling.

6. Smart Materials.

Self-Healing Structures. Recognition. Separation. Catalysts. Heterogeneous Nanostructures and Composites. Encapsulation. Consumer Goods.

7. Sensors.

Natural Nanoscale Sensors. Electromagnetic Sensors. Biosensors. Electronic Noses.

8. Biomedical Applications.

Drugs. Drug Delivery. Photodynamic Therapy. Molecular Motors. Neuro-Electronic Interfaces. Protein Engineering. Shedding New Light on Cells: NanoLuminescent Tags.

9. Optics and Electronics.

Light Energy, Its Capture, and Photovoltaics. Light Production. Light Transmission. Light Control and Manipulation. Electronics. Carbon Nanotubes. Soft Molecule Electronics. Memories. Gates and Switches. Architectures.

10. Nanobusiness.

Boom, Bust, and Nanotechnology: The Next Industrial Revolution? Nanobusiness Today. High Tech, Bio Tech, Nanotech. The Investment Landscape. Other Dot Com Lessons.

11. Nanotechnology and You.

Nanotechnology: Here and Now. Nano Ethics: Looking Beyond the Promise of Nanotechnology. A Some Good Nano




About the Authors.


This book has a straightforward aim—to acquaint you with the wholeidea of nanoscience and nanotechnology. This comprises the fabricationand understanding of matter at the ultimate scale at whichnature designs: the molecular scale. Nanoscience occurs at the intersectionof traditional science and engineering, quantum mechanics,and the most basic processes of life itself. Nanotechnology encompasseshow we harness our knowledge of nanoscience to create materials,machines, and devices that will fundamentally change the waywe live and work.

Nanoscience and nanotechnology are two of the hottest fields inscience, business, and the news today. This book is intended to helpyou understand both of them. It should require the investment ofabout six hours—a slow Sunday afternoon or an airplane trip fromBoston to Los Angeles. Along the way, we hope that you will enjoythis introductory tour of nanoscience and nanotechnology and whatthey might mean for our economy and for our lives.

The first two chapters are devoted to the big idea of nanoscienceand nanotechnology, to definitions, and to promises. Chapters 3 and4 discuss the science necessary to understand nanotechnology; youcan skip these if you remember some of your high school science andmathematics. Chapter 5 is a quick grand tour of some of the thematicareas of nanotechnology, via visits to laboratories. Chapters 6 to 9are the heart of the book. They deal with the topical areas in whichnanoscience and nanotechnology are concentrated: smart materials, sensors, biological structures, electronics, and optics. Chapters 10 and11 discuss business applications and the relationship of nanotechnologyto individuals in the society. The book ends with lists of sourcesof additional information about nanotechnology, venture capitalistswho have expressed interest in nanotechnology, and a glossary of keynanotechnology terms. If you want to discuss nanotechnology or findlinks to more resources, you can also visit the bookUs Web site atwww.nanotechbook.com.

We enjoyed the writing and hope you enjoy the read.


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