The "Nano & Society" poster series provide an entry point for exploring the relationship between nanotechnology and society. They can be displayed on their own, used to spark an open-ended conversation, or paired with suggested activities.
This poster aligns zooms into three familiar objects - a human heart, a butterfly's wing, and a laptop computer. Using the conventions of visual perspective the image travels in one continuous “landscape” from the human scale at the top to the atomic scale in the foreground. As the scale gets smaller and smaller, these disparate objects resolve to individual atoms, highlighting the concept that everything is made of atoms.
What is a nanometer? What things are measured in nanometers? Is a red blood cell bigger or smaller than a bacteria? Step down in size to find out the answers and learn about different types of units that are used to measure very tiny things. This children's book may be downloaded for free from or purchased in hard copy at www.lulu.com or www.amazon.com. See Resources tab for links.
This poster features an illustration of a computer chip across ten orders of magnitude, from the computer chip to the atoms of which it is made. Using the conventions of visual perspective the image travels in one continuous “landscape” from the human scale at the top to the atomic scale in the foreground. The illustration is also available without annotation as an image, banner, or poster, and also appears on the "Everything is Made of Atoms" Poster with other parallel zooms into the human bloodstream and butterfly wing.
This illustration shows a butterfly's wing across ten orders of magnitude, from the butterfly to the atoms of which it is made. Using the conventions of visual perspective the image travels in one continuous “landscape” from the human scale at the top to the atomic scale in the foreground. Placing objects from the butterfly's wing in one frame clarifies connections between components, highlighting the system’s reliance on structures at very different scales.
Scale ladders are diagrams that can quickly convey the size of the nanoscale by showing how objects are related by size. Using existing research on understanding size and scale, the Visualization Laboratory carried out a series of experiments to develop effective scale ladders as well as guidelines for their design and use. This diagram can be dropped as is into an exhibition graphic or used as a template and adapted for different content or graphical contexts.
To understand why the nanoscale is different, we need to appreciate just how small it is. One common way to represent the nanoscale visually relies on scale ladders, diagrams that show how objects are related by size. Using existing research on understanding size and scale, the Visualization Laboratory carried out a series of experiments to develop a scale ladder and guidelines for their design and use.
Printable 18"x24" posters and business-card sized promotional cards for for whatisnano.org website for the public, the DIY Nano App, and nisenet.org website for educators. These can be used to promote these resources to the public.
This series of museum labels are designed for general use in your museum or institution to highlight existing connections to nanoscale science, engineering, or technology. NISE Net partners are already coming up with creative ways to use these labels to showcase nano. For example, you can make a scavenger hunt or special tour to encourage visitors to find all the connections! Additional templates (.doc and .indd) are also provided so that you can create your own signage and content.
This illustration shows how an Atomic Force Microscope (AFM) is used to image a line of graphene made by a pencil. The scale spans ten orders of magnitude, from the microscope and pencil to the atoms that compose the scanning probe and pencil line. As the viewer zooms into the line, graphite flakes, and eventually a single layer of graphene, become visible. On the AFM, a silicon cantilever with a sharp atomic tip and a laser with a photodiode measure the up and down motion as the probe maps out the graphene sample.