Chances are you are already using Nano products based on the new revolutionary technology; if not, then you cannot afford it, yet. Who in the world needs stain-resistant shirts or, for that matter a wrinkle-free trouser? What will become of all the ‘detergent’ companies; the washing machine and press iron makers? Ironically, the persons who can afford the existing commercial ‘Nano products’, perhaps, are the multi-millionaire CEO’s and Presidents of the same detergent and home appliances companies; wearing clothing made from the new ‘disruptive’ technology that may literally put them out of business, in the not-so-far future. Even if the trouser or shirt ultimately gets soiled or just wears off; we may use Nano-cleaning or Nano-weave, to clean or renew them. Am I taking you on a mega ride with my Nano-fantasy! But we are already there in a number of fields; Nanotechnology is coming of age, progressing from the research labs to consumer products; the technology holds key to new developments in technology, communications, engineering, medicines, computers, green energy and many more areas; the secret lies in manipulating the matter at the molecular or atomic level- just a billionth of a meter.
Nanotechnology is a collective term for a wide range of diverse technologies, techniques and processes that involve manipulation of matter at the smallest scale; range from 1 to 100 nano meters or, one billionth of a meter.Nanotechnology, involves engineering at the atomic or molecular level.
(microtechnology on the other hand deal with technology or processes; a millionth of a meter!)
Why and what we need to know about, Nanotechnology?
Nanotechnology is positioned to transcend conventional research boundaries between physics, chemistry, biology mathematics, information technology and engineering.
The leading fields of current research involves commercially viable sectors; nanobio, nanomaterial, surfaces, electronics, Information technology and instrumentation. The most popular, lucrative and marketable segment being Nanomaterial- predominately involving apparel / fashion, medical fabrics and sports/leisure industry. But, not far behind is the consumer products companies: the CP multinationals have taken a lead and introduced Nano molecules in products like anti-bacterial antiperspirants /deodorants containing silver nanoparticles.
Nanotechnology has been an ‘active’ technology in the textiles and fabrics manufacturing industry for some time now. In fact the textile industry has taken an innovative lead and have incorporated the new technology and techniques in their processes. In percentage terms, 90% of the technology in use has been by the textile/fabrics industry alone. The production and marketing have been driven by the lucrative sectors, like the Apparel/Fashion textiles, medical fabrics and sports/outdoor textiles. The percentage share by each sector has been estimated, as follows: Apparel/fashion/sports- 37%, Interior fabrics -33% and technical textiles – 30%.
Nanotechnology and Energy independence:
Energy and Fuel technologies: The most anticipated research is being done in Green energy technologies and battery cell technology. Automobiles in the future, may be running on electricity alone, and will be equipped with smart processes to generate power on board; the current research is directed towards energy creation, storage and transmission technologies.
Next Part: Economics and business potential:
In 2010, the global market for goods incorporating nanotechnology totaled US $15 billion and by some estimates, the 2020 figures are going to be US $2.4 trillion.