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Opportunities for Industry in the Application of Nanotechnology


Academic institutions and funding bodies are beginning to recognize the need for courses in nanotechnology; and new modular and full-time Masters courses are in the process of being developed by more than one institution and needs to be given to the contents of undergraduate science courses, in the light of fundamental knowledge required for nanoscale science; as well as the current philosophy of single-discipline research projects for PhD students in this multidisciplinary era. However, there is no truly multidisciplinary center for nanotechnology R&D.

In summary, industry needs suitable production methods for low cost manufacture of a whole range of materials such as nanomaterials, nanoporous systems, corrosion inhibitors, polymers, molecular sieves, ceramics, light absorbers and emitters, magnetic nanomaterials, pigments, colloids and so on. For end products, like catalysts or adhesive layers, a competitive market position can only be maintained if the analytical equipment necessary for material characterization on an atomic or molecular level is available. Also essential to the equation are people who are trained to understand the new production methods, tools, analytical and testing techniques.

Finally, as materials at the nanometer scale may have unpredictable effects on living matter, the possible toxic and other hazardous properties of various nanomaterials need careful and sensitive investigation.

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