Published: August 12, 2010
CLEMSON — The next huge advance in technology will be really, really small. Nanotechnology — the manipulation of materials and processes at the atomic level — is a key part of the next industrial revolution. Clemson University is hosting Nano2010, an international conference of scientists whose research will help us understand how nanotechnology will affect our world.
Nano 2010 will be from Aug. 22 to 26 at the Madren Conference Center at Clemson University. The conference brings together environmental scientists, toxicologists, material scientists and engineers from five continents, said Stephen Klaine, Clemson professor and interim director of the university’s Institute of Environmental Toxicology in Pendleton.
Society already is seeing benefits from nanotechnology in medicine, materials and manufacturing — everything from stain-resistant fabrics to solar panels. While the future looks promising, researchers must know how nanoparticles will interact with the environment, in the water, air and soil.
“Engineered nanoparticles and nanomaterials offer many potential socioeconomic, health and environmental benefits as a result of novel properties and behavior that materials can exhibit when manufactured at the nanoscale. While the production of nanomaterials is undergoing exponential growth, their biological effects and environmental fate and behavior are relatively unknown,” said Klaine, the conference coordinator.
Invited speakers will provide global perspectives on environmental research into nanomaterials. Sessions will focus on nanoparticle accumulation in the food chain, the impact on microbes, and their fate and behavior in aquatic and terrestrial environments. There also will be poster presentations and discussions.
A special feature will be a pre-conference short course: Nanomaterials in the Environment Aug. 21 and 22. The course is designed to introduce students and faculty members to nanomaterials, review nanoparticle environmental fate and effects, and provide hands-on experience in nanoparticle interaction with life in water environments.
This meeting is the fifth annual international meeting on this topic following the success of previous meetings in the United Kingdom and, most recently, Nano 2009 held in Vienna.