Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Definition of 'nano'

from here (which I'll have more substantial things to say about):
Later, as funding appeared and researchers flocked under the banner of nanotechnology it came to mean far larger systems. A bit cynically, one could say that any kind of material technology, chemistry or physics can be called nanotechnology if at least some part can be measured in nanometers - even if it is by the hundreds of them. If funding is made more likely by adding the prefix nano- to one's research, the temptation is great to do it. There is also the positive side: by seeing many diverse fields as converging into nanoscience, great synergies and interdisciplinary adventures can be started. But the N-word still gets diluted.

As a researcher, I've never heard "nano" to be used where the smallest dimension was greater than 100 nm. It's always used for less than that, not when it can be measured "by the hundreds of [nanometers]".

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