The growing science of nanotechnology is the study of matter at an incredibly small scale, generally between one and 100 nanometers. For example, a piece of paper is 100,000 nanometers thick, and a single red blood cell is about 7,000 nanometers in diameter. Nanoscale materials are found in products people use every day. They add strength to plastics while making them lightweight, and they make fabrics water- and stain-resistant. Almost all electronic devices made in the last decade use some nanomaterials, including today’s most advanced computer chips. Some pharmaceutical products have been reformulated with nanosized particles to improve their performance.
Nanotechnology could bring about the next wave of innovation in science and engineering—the possibilities are endless. It has the potential to transform aerospace, agriculture, information technology, national defense, transportation and many other sectors. The next generation of nanomaterials will be stronger, lighter and more durable than the materials used today in buildings, bridges, airplanes and automobiles. Nanotechnology holds great promise for developing revolutionary tools to help create a more energy efficient world, such as fuel cells, batteries and solar panels. Nanotechnology can provide solutions for cleaning contaminated soil and water, and it will play a critical role in transforming medicine and health care.
The Nanotechnology Panel of the American Chemistry Council (ACC) is composed of companies with business interests in the products and applications of nanotechnology. The Panel advocates for responsible development of nanotechnology, sound approaches to nanotechnology policy and for research on potential health and environmental issues associated with nanotechnology.
Nanotechnology Panel Presents at Society of Toxicology
On March 13, 2013, the ACC Nanotechnology Panel presented a poster titled Comparative assessment of nanomaterial definitions and considerations for implementation at the 52nd Annual Meeting of the Society of Toxicology. The panel conducted a comparative assessment of existing regulatory definitions of nanomaterials and identified numerous inconsistencies that may impede communication and increase regulatory compliance costs. The panel makes seven recommendations concerning key material properties that should be considered in any regulatory definition.
Workshop: Strategies for Setting Occupational Exposure Limits for Engineered Nanomaterials
On September 10-11, 2012, the ACC Nanotechnology Panel co-sponsored a workshop with the George Washington University (GWU) on “Strategies for Setting Occupational Exposure Limits for Engineered Nanomaterials.”