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What is Nanotechnology?

17 October 2007

Nanotechnology is widely seen as offering huge potential for development in fields as diverse as healthcare, IT and energy generation and storage. Interest in nanotechnology is growing rapidly, and governments and businesses across the world have begun to invest heavily in it.

Nanotechnology is an emergent area that is developing quickly. It is the branch of technology that seeks to exploit the unique behaviour of materials having one or more dimensions less than 100 nanometres.

Why standards for nanotechnology are important

Standards will underpin the development and commercialization of nanotechnology, and aid efforts to ensure that this is done in an open, safe and responsible manner. Standards will support:

Safety testing, legislation and regulation
Worker, public and environmental safety
Commercialization and procurement
Patenting and IPR
Communication about the benefits, opportunities and potential problems associated with nanotechnologies.
BSI British Standards will publish nine documents for nanotechnology terminology and guidance for UK industry, addressing nanotechnology health and safety issues, materials specifications, and labelling of nanotechnology-based products.

For further information and details of standards and publications available, please visit BSI’s Nanotechnology microsite www.bsi-global.com/nano/

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