Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > News > How nanotech can meet the poor's water needs

May 11th, 2009

How nanotech can meet the poor's water needs

Abstract:
David Dickson: Nanotechnology holds huge potential for supplying clean water to the world's poor, but many challenges must be overcome to realise it.

When the economist Fritz Schumacher coined the phrase "small is beautiful" more than 30 years ago, he was hoping to promote "intermediate technologies" that focus on local techniques, knowledge and materials, rather than high-tech solutions to problems facing the world's poor.

Nowhere is the promise of nanotechnology stronger than in water treatment. Nanofiltration techniques and nanoparticles can reduce or eliminate contaminants in water and could help deliver a key Millennium Development Goal ó halving the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water by the year 2015.

The challenges are many, and not just technical. Some relate to health and safety, and the need for appropriate regulations to defend both. And some are more political, for example the need to make basic technologies both accessible to and controllable by the communities that need them most. Like any new technology, community acceptance is essential if nanotechnology is to effectively work in villages across the developing world, where water problems are often the most acute.

But there are many reasons to be optimistic that we can overcome these challenges and, by doing so, that nanotechnology can pioneer a new paradigm for applying modern technology to development needs. Its current applications show how modern science and technology can be successfully blended with concern for human and environmental health on the one hand, and a commitment to community engagement in technological innovation on the other.

Source:
scidev.net

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

The School of Materials at the University of Manchester utilise Debenís mechanical stages to characterise structure and behaviour at the micro- and nano- scale July 25th, 2017

Shining rings: A new material emits white light when exposed to electricity: New synthetic approach could spark development of other dynamic materials July 24th, 2017

Ultrathin device harvests electricity from human motion July 23rd, 2017

The July 23 close fly-by of asteroid 2017 BS5 is explored in a Q&A with Dr. John S. Lewis, chief scientist at Deep Space Industries July 23rd, 2017

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Ultrathin device harvests electricity from human motion July 23rd, 2017

The first light atomic nucleus with a second face July 20th, 2017

Semiliquid chains pulled out of a sea of microparticles July 20th, 2017

Here's a tip: Indented cement shows unique properties: Rice University models reveal nanoindentation can benefit crystals in concrete July 20th, 2017

Possible Futures

Shining rings: A new material emits white light when exposed to electricity: New synthetic approach could spark development of other dynamic materials July 24th, 2017

Ultrathin device harvests electricity from human motion July 23rd, 2017

The July 23 close fly-by of asteroid 2017 BS5 is explored in a Q&A with Dr. John S. Lewis, chief scientist at Deep Space Industries July 23rd, 2017

Scientists announce the quest for high-index materials: All-dielectric nanophotonics: The quest for better materials and fabrication techniques July 22nd, 2017

Environment

Researchers revolutionize vital conservation tool with use of gold nanotechnology and lasers: Cryopreservation study results have sweeping implications for wildlife conservation and human health July 15th, 2017

Bacteria-coated nanofiber electrodes clean pollutants in wastewater July 1st, 2017

Nanostructures taste the rainbow: Combining nanophotonics and thermoelectrics, engineers at Caltech generate materials capable of distinguishing between tiny differences in wavelengths of light June 30th, 2017

New photoacoustic technique detects gases at parts-per-quadrillion level June 30th, 2017

Water

Bacteria-coated nanofiber electrodes clean pollutants in wastewater July 1st, 2017

Smart materials used in ultrasound behave similar to water, Penn chemists report June 16th, 2017

Plasmonics could bring sustainable society, desalination tech June 2nd, 2017

Using light to propel water : With new method, MIT engineers can control and separate fluids on a surface using only visible light April 25th, 2017

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project