Tiny Particles, Big Trouble!

NISE Network product
Tiny Particles, Big Trouble explains why some nanoscale science and technology is done in the controlled environment of a clean room, what clean rooms are like, and how scientists help keep the clean room clean. During the program, visitors sniff scents that are too small to see, try on the head-to-toe suits that scientists wear in clean rooms, and manipulate pretend silicon wafers with tweezers.


Big Idea

Clean rooms keep out tiny particles and chemicals, allowing nanoscientists to study and make things that are too small to see.

Learning Goals

Nano is very, very small.

Nanoscientists study and make things that are too small to see.

Tiny particles of dust and chemicals can cause big problems when studying and making nano-sized things.

Some nano labs are clean rooms.

Clean rooms have a controlled environment to control particles and chemicals.

Scientists who work in clean rooms use special equipment and materials and wear special clothes.

Nano Content Map
Nanometer-sized things are very small, and often behave differently than larger things do.
Scientists and engineers have formed the interdisciplinary field of nanotechnology by investigating properties and manipulating matter at the nanoscale.



Developed for the NISE Network with funding from the National Science Foundation under Award Numbers 0532536 and 0940143. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this product are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Foundation.


Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 3.0 United States (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 US).
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Development Process
NISE Network products are developed through an iterative collaborative process that includes scientific review, peer review, and visitor evaluation in accordance with an inclusive audiences approach. Products are designed to be easily edited and adapted for different audiences under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike license. To learn more, visit our Development Process page.