The focus of today's sessions at NSF's meeting of nanoscale science and engineering grantees focuses on putting the science to practical use. First up this morning is nanomanufacturing. Mark Tuonimen from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst gave a talk about the Nanoscale Manufacturing Network and one of his images caught my imagination. This image, which comes from the draft Nano2 vision document on the next decade of nanoscale research, illustrates and idea that is sometimes referred to as a periodic table of nanoparticles.
A periodic table of nanoparticles needs to be three-dimensional because the chemical composition, the shape, and the size are all variables that create substances with different properties. The idea for nanomanufacturing is that these components are available building blocks for manufacturing devices and materials at the nanoscale.