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October 12th, 2007

Nano-agglomeration disputed

Some nanotechnology fanciers suggest that, like proverbial birds of a feather, engineered nanoscale materials will flock - or clump - together. This tendency, they maintain, should reduce or eliminate risks as nanotechnology manufacturing increases and the number of nanotechnology-enabled products grows.

Think again, cautions nanoparticle expert Andrew Maynard, chief science advisor to the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, in a new article written for the United Kingdom's SAFENANO Initiative. Drawing on available scientific knowledge, Maynard disputes the claim that the so-called agglomeration of engineered nanomaterials will result in "super-sized" clusters so large that they cannot penetrate deep inside the body, thereby eliminating the potential for harm.


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