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Nanotechnology and design

Title: Nanotechnology and design
Author(s): George Elvin
Paper category : conference
Book title: NICOM 2: 2nd International Symposium on Nanotechnology in Construction
Editor(s): Y. de Miguel, A. Porro and P.J.M. Bartos
Print-ISBN: 2-912143-87-X
e-ISBN: 2912143888
Publisher: RILEM Publications SARL
Publication year: 2006
Pages: 349 - 353
Total Pages: 5
Language: English

Abstract: Nanotechnology, the ability to manipulate matter at the scale of less than one billionth of a meter, has the potential to transform the built environment dramatically. According to the Interagency Working Group on Nanoscience, Engineering, and Technology, nanotechnology “is likely to change the way almost everything - from vaccines to computers to automobile tires to objects not yet imagined - is designed and made.” According to the University of Illinois at Urban-Champaign Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology, it “will lead to fundamental changes in how we live and interact with our environment." If nanotechnology is to change how we design and how we live, then a study of nanotechnology’s implications for architecture is clearly needed. This paper addresses questions about nanotechnology and the built environment at three levels. First, what role does nanotechnology play today in architecture? Many nano-engineered materials are already available to architects and builders, and are beginning to transform our buildings. Looking further ahead, nanotechnologies now in research and development will likely have a significant impact on building within the next twenty years. For example, carbon nanotubes, fifty to one hundred times stronger than steel at one-sixth of the weight, could bring unprecedented strength and flexibility to our buildings. The first factories to manufacture carbon nanotubes and fullerenes are under already construction in Japan. On the far horizon, the full impact of nanotechnology on our lives and our environment into the next century and beyond is impossible to predict but important to consider. The aim of this paper is to analyze the architectural impacts of nanotechnology, including its social, environmental, ethical, professional and technical implications. Its results are intended to help individuals in the academic and professional communities as well as the general public make intelligent choices about the future of our relationship to the built environment.

Online publication: 2005-11-17
Publication type : full_text
Public price (Euros): 0.00

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