Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors



Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


android tablet pc

Home > Press > University Analysis Suggests Limiting Exposure to Carbon Nanotubes

Risk Analysis - Volume 30, Issue 11, pages 1708–1722, November 2010
Risk Analysis - Volume 30, Issue 11, pages 1708–1722, November 2010

Abstract:
UC Berkeley Researcher Finds Potential Adverse Health Effects Merit Caution

University Analysis Suggests Limiting Exposure to Carbon Nanotubes

Washington, DC | Posted on November 17th, 2010

While offering great promise in a host of new applications, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) could be harmful to humans and a new risk review suggests product designers and others should provisionally treat CNTs "as if" they are hazardous.

Carbon nanotubes are extremely small, with a diameter measured in nanometers. A nanometer is one-billionth of a meter, or about one eighty-thousandth the thickness of a human hair. CNTs are very versatile and come in several forms, conferring great strength while also being very light.

Because environmental and health information on CNTs is incomplete and sometimes conflicting, an "anticipatory governance" approach to the technology is needed, according to Mark Philbrick, post-doctoral researcher at the Center of Integrated Nanomechanical Systems at the University of California, Berkeley. Anticipatory governance is an approach designed to support decision makers where there is uncertainty about safety, a common situation when managing emerging technologies.

The research was funded by the National Science Foundation and the conclusions are detailed in Philbrick's article "An Anticipatory Governance Approach to Carbon Nanotubes," in the November issue of the journal Risk Analysis published by the Society for Risk Analysis. The entire November issue is devoted to risk analysis articles related to nanotechnology.

An anticipatory approach is particularly important until the toxicity and behavior of CNTs in the environment are better understood, especially as they can remain airborne for extended periods, and share some characteristics with asbestos. While a few rodent studies have found similarities between the health effects of inhaling both substances, there is not enough data to draw firm conclusions.

The article notes the promise held out by CNTs is immense: some types conduct electricity and heat better than copper, others are stronger than steel while weighing less than aluminum, and yet others could be used in targeted drug delivery. These properties could find uses in aircraft frames, sensors, and electrical transmission. Nevertheless, treating them "as if" they are hazardous is a prudent course of action given uncertainty about their potential health consequences, the author said.

Given the "conflicted character of the data," how "relevant actors" should respond is the central question Philbrick asks in developing strategies for utilizing CNTs. He asserts that treating carbon nanotubes "as if" they are hazardous implies limiting exposure throughout product life-cycles. This means implementing strong engineering controls for CNT research and manufacturing, avoiding applications where the CNTs would be routinely released to the environment, and planning for recycling at the end of a product's useful life. The article also argues, "The anticipatory governance approach is particularly important as innovation rates in nanotechnologies exceed our capacity to assess human and environmental consequences of these innovations, especially when deployed at commercial scales … it helps identify uncertainties in our knowledge and focuses future research to address those gaps."

Risk Analysis: An International Journal is published by the nonprofit Society for Risk Analysis (SRA). SRA is a multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary, scholarly, international society that provides an open forum for all those who are interested in risk analysis. Risk analysis is broadly defined to include risk assessment, risk characterization, risk communication, risk management, and policy relating to risk, in the context of risks of concern to individuals, to public and private sector organizations, and to society at a local, regional, national, or global level.

Note to editors: The complete study is available upon request from Lisa Pellegrin/Steve Gibb or here: onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1539-6924.2010.01445.x/full

The Special November issue of Risk Analysis: An International Journal also contains the following other articles on nanotechnology:

* Perspective
* Exposure Assessment Approaches for Engineered Nanomaterials - Linda C. Abbott, and Andrew D. Maynard
* Nanotechnology Risk Communication Past and Prologue - Ann Bostrom and Ragnar E. Lofstedt
* Perspective
* The Uncertainty of Nanotoxicology: Report of a Society for Risk Analysis Workshop - Richard A. Canady
* Perspective
* Nanotechnology, Risk, and Oversight: Learning Lessons from Related Emerging Technologies - Jennifer Kuzma and Susanna Priest
* Responsible Innovation: A Pilot Study with the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council - Richard Owen
* Comparative Study of Predictive Computational Models for Nanoparticle-Induced Cytotoxicity - Christie Sayes and Ivan Ivanov
* Perspective
* Nano Risk Analysis: Advancing the Science for Nanomaterials Risk Management - Jo Anne Shatkin, Linda Carolyn Abbott et. al.
* Perspective
* Risk Characterization for Nanotechnology - Richard A. Williams, Kristen M. Kulinowski, et. al

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Steve Gibb

703.610.2441
Society for Risk Analysis

Lisa Pellegrin
571.327.4868

Copyright © Society for Risk Analysis

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Effective Nanotechnology Innovations to Receive Mustafa Prize September 16th, 2014

‘Small’ transformation yields big changes September 16th, 2014

Elusive Quantum Transformations Found Near Absolute Zero: Brookhaven Lab and Stony Brook University researchers measured the quantum fluctuations behind a novel magnetic material's ultra-cold ferromagnetic phase transition September 15th, 2014

'Squid skin' metamaterials project yields vivid color display: Rice lab creates RGB color display technology with aluminum nanorods September 15th, 2014

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

‘Small’ transformation yields big changes September 16th, 2014

'Squid skin' metamaterials project yields vivid color display: Rice lab creates RGB color display technology with aluminum nanorods September 15th, 2014

Fonon at Cutting-Edge of 3D Military Printing: Live-Combat Scenarios Could See a Decisive Advantage with 3D Printing September 15th, 2014

Seeking Nanoscale Defenses for Biological and Chemical Threats: WPI co-organizes a NATO workshop to improve the detection and decontamination of biological and chemical agents September 13th, 2014

Possible Futures

Air Force’s 30-year plan seeks 'strategic agility' August 1st, 2014

IBM Announces $3 Billion Research Initiative to Tackle Chip Grand Challenges for Cloud and Big Data Systems: Scientists and engineers to push limits of silicon technology to 7 nanometers and below and create post-silicon future July 10th, 2014

Virus structure inspires novel understanding of onion-like carbon nanoparticles April 10th, 2014

Local girl does good March 22nd, 2014

Academic/Education

Malvern technology delivers Malvern reliability in multi-disciplinary lab at Queen Mary University London September 9th, 2014

State University of New York Trustees Unanimously Approve SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly) as New Name for Merged SUNY CNSE / SUNYIT September 9th, 2014

New Vice President Takes Helm at CNSE CMOST: Catherine Gilbert To Lead CNSE Children’s Museum of Science and Technology Through Expansion And Relocation August 29th, 2014

RMIT delivers $30m boost to micro and nano-tech August 26th, 2014

Nanotubes/Buckyballs

‘Small’ transformation yields big changes September 16th, 2014

Rice rolls 'neat' nanotube fibers: Rice University researchers' acid-free approach leads to strong conductive carbon threads September 15th, 2014

Berkeley Lab Licenses Boron Nitride Nanotube Technology: New material has unique mechanical and electronic properties September 13th, 2014

Global Energy Systems Signs Master Sales Agreement with China Aviation Supplies Group September 4th, 2014

Sensors

Simple, Cost-Effective Method Proposed for Synthesizing Zinc Oxide Nanopigments September 15th, 2014

First Colloid and Polymer Science Lecture awarded to Orlin D. Velev: Chemical engineer honored for outstanding research in colloid science September 12th, 2014

UT Arlington research uses nanotechnology to help cool electrons with no external sources September 11th, 2014

Development of Algorithm for Accurate Calculation of Average Distance Travelled by Low-Speed Electrons without Energy Loss that Are Sensitive to Surface Structure September 11th, 2014

Announcements

Effective Nanotechnology Innovations to Receive Mustafa Prize September 16th, 2014

‘Small’ transformation yields big changes September 16th, 2014

Rice rolls 'neat' nanotube fibers: Rice University researchers' acid-free approach leads to strong conductive carbon threads September 15th, 2014

Simple, Cost-Effective Method Proposed for Synthesizing Zinc Oxide Nanopigments September 15th, 2014

Environment

Iranian Nano Scientists Create Flame-Resistant Polymers September 13th, 2014

NanoStruck has a High Recovery Rate on Mine Tailings: retrieval of up to 96% of Gold, 88% of Silver and 86% of Palladium September 12th, 2014

Nanostruck announces 87.6% recovery of 56 GMS/ton silver tailings samples September 12th, 2014

Boosting armor for nuclear-waste eating microbes September 12th, 2014

Aerospace/Space

Simple, Cost-Effective Method Proposed for Synthesizing Zinc Oxide Nanopigments September 15th, 2014

Iranian Nano Scientists Create Flame-Resistant Polymers September 13th, 2014

UT Arlington research uses nanotechnology to help cool electrons with no external sources September 11th, 2014

Industrial waste converted in coating for aircraft turbines September 11th, 2014

Safety-Nanoparticles/Risk management

Engineers develop new sensor to detect tiny individual nanoparticles September 2nd, 2014

Sunblock poses potential hazard to sea life August 20th, 2014

Analytical solutions from Malvern Instruments support University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee researchers in understanding environmental effects of nanomaterials July 30th, 2014

NNCO Announces an Interactive Webinar: Progress Review on the Coordinated Implementation of the National Nanotechnology Initiative 2011 Environmental, Health, and Safety Research Strategy July 23rd, 2014

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







© Copyright 1999-2014 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE