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Home > Press > 2007 Headlines

2007 Headlines

Central Point, OR | Posted on December 28th, 2006

Nanotechnology consultant Rocky Rawstern has been thinking about "nanotech in 2006," and posted the following at his blog today.

As a result of progress made and "nano" issues raised in 2006, among the headliners I see in 2007 include:

  • Regulation of some or all nanoparticles, in one or more countries
  • Answers to some toxicity issues, but not all (by a long shot)
  • Breakthroughs that make a few medical nanotechnologies practical, and human studies of same
  • Extensive use of nanotubes in composite materials
  • A significant increase in nano-based products
  • A great deal of interest in and subsequent higher funding of solar, fuel cells and hydrogen storage technologies.
  • A great deal of interest in and subsequent higher funding of sensor technologies for military, homeland security and civilian applications.

Watch for:

  • any regulation to bend someone's nose out of joint and possibly be such a compromise as to satisfy none.
  • the same thing in regards to toxicity issues; findings on any given nanoparticle or material may cause widespread dismay among enviro and/or business interests.
  • either issue could result in a loss of confidence in investors and/or the public, and a subsequent reduction in funding.
  • bulk nanotube prices to drop, separation techniques to become more efficient, and functionalization methods to create opportunities in the medical and functional materials fields.
  • Wildcards: things we cannot predict but know from experience do occur. Examples include splitting the atom, and creating the first integrated circuit; both game changers. As the unique properties of nanoscale materials continue being quantified, and resultant advanced products are created in greater numbers, nanotechnologies have become widely accepted as game changers, rule breakers, and enablers.

My expectations are "hopefully confident" that the best of nanotech will dominate. For 2007, if investor and public confidence remain high and nano-based products remain safe, expect economies to experience a growth spurt.

In the near future, don't be surprised when several countries start to state in their yearly GDP reports that "nano" has become a significant growth-enabling factor. Don't be surprised when new players enter the market, "changing the game" in ways we cannot imagine today. It's happened before, and nanotechnologies are enabling a social/economic change as great as any we've experienced, if not greater.

####

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