Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > US, UK join forces for nano safety

Abstract:
Rice leads US universities in creation of risk-management tools

US, UK join forces for nano safety

Houston, TX | Posted on January 26th, 2011

Environmental and scientific agencies in the United States and the United Kingdom have formed a joint $5 million scientific effort to develop new risk-management tools that government officials can use to effectively regulate nanomaterials.

The Nanomaterial Bioavailability and Environmental Exposure (Nano-BEE) Consortia includes investigators from three universities each in the U.S. and the U.K.

"Regulators need tools that will allow them to look at a wide variety of nanomaterials and rapidly identify the most significant potential problems for a specific nanomaterial in a specific location," said lead U.S. investigator Vicki Colvin of Rice University. "This consortia will model how the local environmental chemistry influences the availability of nanomaterials. We expect to see a lot of variability: What is safe in one area may be unsafe someplace else."

Colvin, Rice's Pitzer-Schlumberger Professor of Chemistry and director of Rice's Center for Biological and Environmental Nanotechnology, said the consortia hopes to produce a "plug-and-play" tool that will allow regulators to enter information about the size and type of nanomaterial, local water-chemistry conditions, soil types and the like. The tool would then tell how much of a particular product could be safely released in that location, which is just the sort of information regulators need.

Regulation based on sound science and validated models will help accelerate nanotechnology innovation, Colvin said. "The worst thing for an emerging technology is to be faced with uncertainty. This consortium will provide a predictable and quantitative framework for regulation that companies and the public can have confidence in," she said.

"Nanotechnology holds great potential to improve the quality of all our lives and to have a revolutionary impact on many disciplines," said co-investigator Pedro Alvarez, the George R. Brown Professor of Engineering and chair of Rice's Department of Engineering. "But unfortunately, many promising technologies and policies have created unintended collateral damage in the past. It's important that we take a proactive approach to risk-assessment."

"This collaborative project will provide the scientific underpinning for models to understand where nanoparticles go in the environment under what conditions and how they affect environmental organisms once there," said lead U.K. investigator Jamie Lead, a professor of environmental nanoscience at the University of Birmingham. "The outcomes will have huge importance for the safety and sustainability of the nanotechnology industry."

The U.K.'s Science and Innovation team in Houston, part of the Foreign and Commonwealth office, helped facilitate interactions between scientists at Rice and in the U.K. with workshops and trans-Atlantic visits. May Akrawi, HM Consul and head of the team, said, "We are delighted to hear of this award and look forward to continuing the long tradition of Rice's partnership in nanotechnology research with the U.K."

The consortia's U.S. partners include Rice, Clemson University and the University of California, Davis. U.K. partners include the University of Birmingham, Napier University and the University of Exeter, as well as the Natural History Museum of London.

Colvin said the consortia hopes to deliver speedy results by modifying existing and accepted scientific models of how nanoparticles circulate through biological systems. "Silver gives us a good starting place," she said. "If we could capitalize on 20 years of silver bioavailability models -- which are already being used to set regulatory policy in the U.S. -- we could save a lot of time."

Kristen Kulinowski, a senior faculty fellow in chemistry at Rice, is a co-investigator. Rice's Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology is coordinating the effort at the university.

The project, part of an $11 million U.S.-U.K. nanotechnology research program, is jointly funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. National Science Foundation and the U.K. Natural Environment Research Council, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, Medical Research Council, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and Department of Health and Environment Agency.

####

About Rice University
Located in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation's top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. A Tier One research university known for its "unconventional wisdom," Rice has schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and offers its 3,485 undergraduates and 2,275 graduate students a wide range of majors. Rice has the sixth-largest endowment per student among American private research universities and is rated No. 4 for “best value” among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. Its undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is less than 6-to-1. With a residential college system that builds close-knit and diverse communities and collaborative culture, Rice has been ranked No. 1 for best quality of life multiple times by the Princeton Review.

Read "What they're saying about Rice," at

futureowls.rice.edu/images/futureowls/Rice_Brag_Sheet.pdf

Science & Innovation Team, British Consulate General-Houston
The Science & Innovation Team in Houston is part of the United Kingdom's Foreign and Commonwealth Office network of global science attachés. They work to facilitate collaborations between science and innovation providers and users in the United Kingdom and the United States in industry, academia and research institutions. In addition, they keep U.K. policymakers fully informed about research and policy developments in the U.S., as well as promote the U.K. as a world-class leader in science and innovation. The Science Network also reports on policy developments, strategy and emerging priorities and facilitates international negotiations and collaborations in such areas as climate change, stem cell research, nanotechnology and low-carbon technologies. For information, please contact S&I Consul May Akrawi at

For news of U.K. science and policy developments and joint U.S.-U.K. funding calls, visit our embassy website: ukinusa.fco.gov.uk/science.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
David Ruth
Director of National Media Relations
Office 713.348.6327

Copyright © Rice University

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

JPK talks with Dr Frank Lafont, Director of the BioImaging Center Lille (BICeL) about the use of the NanoWizard® AFM together with fluorescence microscopy in the study of living cells June 19th, 2018

Powering the 21st Century with Integrated Photonics: UCSB-Led Team Selected for Demonstration of a Novel Waveguide Platform Which is Transparent Throughout the MWIR and LWIR Spectral Bands June 19th, 2018

Executives Explore Key Megatrends and Innovations in MEMS, Sensors, Imaging Tech at SEMI-MSIG European Summits: Speakers to share developments in smart automotive, smart cities, smart industrial, biomedical, consumer and IoT, September 19-21, 2018 in Grenoble, France June 19th, 2018

Carbon nanotube optics poised to provide pathway to optical-based quantum cryptography and quantum computing: Researchers are exploring enhanced potential of carbon nanotubes for unique applications June 18th, 2018

Preparing for Nano

How nanoscience will improve our health and lives in the coming years: Targeted medicine deliveries and increased energy efficiency are just two of many ways October 26th, 2016

Searching for a nanotech self-organizing principle May 1st, 2016

Nanotechnology is changing everything from medicine to self-healing buildings: Nanotechnology is so small it's measured in billionths of metres, and it is revolutionising every aspect of our lives April 2nd, 2016

Durnham University's DEEPEN project comes to a close September 26th, 2012

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Powering the 21st Century with Integrated Photonics: UCSB-Led Team Selected for Demonstration of a Novel Waveguide Platform Which is Transparent Throughout the MWIR and LWIR Spectral Bands June 19th, 2018

Carbon nanotube optics poised to provide pathway to optical-based quantum cryptography and quantum computing: Researchers are exploring enhanced potential of carbon nanotubes for unique applications June 18th, 2018

Camouflaged nanoparticles used to deliver killer protein to cancer June 17th, 2018

Squeezing light at the nanoscale: Ultra-confined light could detect harmful molecules June 17th, 2018

Academic/Education

Powering the 21st Century with Integrated Photonics: UCSB-Led Team Selected for Demonstration of a Novel Waveguide Platform Which is Transparent Throughout the MWIR and LWIR Spectral Bands June 19th, 2018

SUNY Poly Professor Eric Lifshin Selected for ‘Fellow of the Microanalysis Society’ Position for Significant Contributions to Microanalysis June 13th, 2018

Grand Opening of UC Irvine Materials Research Institute (IMRI) to Spotlight JEOL Center for Nanoscale Solutions: Renowned Materials Scientists to Present at the 1st International Symposium on Advanced Microscopy and Spectroscopy (ISAMS) April 18th, 2018

Lifeboat Foundation funds flying 3D-printed classroom cubesats with Perlan II April 16th, 2018

Materials/Metamaterials

Making quantum puddles: Physicists discover how to create the thinnest liquid films ever June 13th, 2018

Nickel ferrite promotes capacity and cycle stability of lithium-sulfur battery June 13th, 2018

Evidence for a new property of quantum matter revealed: Electrical dipole activity detected in a quantum material unlike any other tested June 11th, 2018

Nano-saturn: Supramolecular complex formation: Anthracene macrocycle and C60 fullerene June 8th, 2018

Announcements

JPK talks with Dr Frank Lafont, Director of the BioImaging Center Lille (BICeL) about the use of the NanoWizard® AFM together with fluorescence microscopy in the study of living cells June 19th, 2018

Powering the 21st Century with Integrated Photonics: UCSB-Led Team Selected for Demonstration of a Novel Waveguide Platform Which is Transparent Throughout the MWIR and LWIR Spectral Bands June 19th, 2018

Executives Explore Key Megatrends and Innovations in MEMS, Sensors, Imaging Tech at SEMI-MSIG European Summits: Speakers to share developments in smart automotive, smart cities, smart industrial, biomedical, consumer and IoT, September 19-21, 2018 in Grenoble, France June 19th, 2018

Carbon nanotube optics poised to provide pathway to optical-based quantum cryptography and quantum computing: Researchers are exploring enhanced potential of carbon nanotubes for unique applications June 18th, 2018

Environment

Squeezing light at the nanoscale: Ultra-confined light could detect harmful molecules June 17th, 2018

A nanotech sensor that turns molecular fingerprints into bar codes June 7th, 2018

Engineered polymer membranes could be new option for water treatment May 6th, 2018

Harvesting clean hydrogen fuel through artificial photosynthesis May 3rd, 2018

Safety-Nanoparticles/Risk management

NIOSH Releases New Nanotechnology Workplace Design Recommendations March 13th, 2018

How harmful are nano-copper and anti-fungal combinations in the waterways? October 27th, 2017

Do titanium dioxide particles from orthopedic implants disrupt bone repair? September 16th, 2017

Tests show no nanotubes released during utilisation of nanoaugmented materials June 9th, 2017

Alliances/Trade associations/Partnerships/Distributorships

Powering the 21st Century with Integrated Photonics: UCSB-Led Team Selected for Demonstration of a Novel Waveguide Platform Which is Transparent Throughout the MWIR and LWIR Spectral Bands June 19th, 2018

Leti and Cellmic Join Forces to Speed Market Adoption of Lens-Free Imaging and Sensing Techniques May 3rd, 2018

Nanobiotix and Weill Cornell Medicine Partner on Pre-Clinical Research Inbox x May 3rd, 2018

New era in high field superconducting magnets – opening new frontiers in science, nanotechnology and materials discovery January 9th, 2018

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



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project