Thursday, March 8, 2007

Picture of the day

Nano Poolette

Carol Cooper, Nano Poolette, NanoArt 2006

From NanoArt 2006. © Copyright Carol Cooper (click to see larger version)

NANOART is a new art discipline related to micro/nanosculptures created by artists/scientists through chemical/physical processes and/or natural micro/nanostructures that are visualized with powerful research tools like Scanning Electron Microscope and Atomic Force Microscope.

NanoArt could be for the 21st Century what Photography was for the 20th Century. We live in a technological society, in a new Renaissance period, and there is no reason for Arts to stay away from Technology. NanoArt is the expression of the New Technological Revolution and reflects the transition from Science to Art using Technology.

See all of Carol Cooper's NanoArt 2006 entries here, or visit her website.

Please contact me if you would like to submit an image. (rocky at

Quote of the day

"Nanotechnology, the manipulation of matter at the level of individual atoms and molecules, offers the greatest benefits for society if left to grow through modest regulation, civilian research, and an emphasis on self-regulation and responsible professional culture."

~Sonia Arrison, Director of Technology Studies, Pacific Research Institute

Technology Review: Will fair regulation of a field as complex as nanotechnology be possible without a radical new approach?
Richard Denison: We've dealt with some pretty tough issues in regulation and legislation, and I don't know if nano is so novel or so unique that it's going to require a whole new approach. We understand the basics of assessing hazard. We understand the basics of assessing exposure and mitigating exposure. Those need to be tailored and adapted to the characteristics of nanomaterials, but I don't know that we're talking about anything much more radical than that.

~From: Can Nanotech Be Regulated (an interview by Technology Review, with Richard Denison. See,319,p2.html)

The public's fear of and fascination with nanotechnology is largely exaggerated, said George M. Whitesides, professor of chemistry at Harvard University. "There is a lot of hyperbole and anxiety" over nanotechnology, he said, accompanied by an overperception of risk, such as the specter of self-replicating nanobots gone amok. "The 'grey goo' and apocalyptic views are largely irrational," he said.

~From: Nanotech Ethics Debated. See

Regulation, risk management, safety and ethics

Following on the theme of "perceptions" from yesterday’s post, today I would like to cover more on regulation, risk management, safety and ethics. These are topics that I will cover on a regular basis.

The following are excerpts from the first week of February, 2007.

"Nanotechnology—the so-called "science of the small"—is raising some really big questions about the adequacy of the current federal oversight system. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is grappling with understanding the jurisdiction and applicability of major laws, like the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) and the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), with respect to nanotechnology. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is evaluating the effectiveness of the agency's regulatory approaches and authorities to meet the potential unique challenges presented by the use of nanomaterials in FDA-regulated products, and the agency expects to issue its findings in July 2007."

(From: Nanotechnology: Thinking Big About Things Small

"A Swiss firm is offering the first process risk management and safety certification for pharma companies working with nanoparticles and technologies. A Swiss firm is offering the first process risk management and safety certification for pharma companies working with nanoparticles and technologies."

(From: World's first nanospecific safety label

"Despite the potential benefits to agrifood producers, retailers and consumers, nanotechnology’s applications in the food industry are a reason for concern for many. Stone points out that privacy and control issues associated with agrifood and nanotechnology are likely to be among several hot-button issues."

(From: Old food meets new technologies, leaves food for thought

"A greater understanding of the interaction of nanomaterials with biological systems, especially of the interaction of nanomaterials with cell membranes, will enable scientists to take full advantage of the unique properties of nanomaterials while minimizing their adverse effects."

(From: The challenge of designing nanomaterials with reduced toxicity

"The NEW Precise(TM) HEPA-Filtered Glove Boxes provide a physical barrier to protect the operator form hazardous airborne particulates and powders. These economical boxes have uses in pharmaceutical research, nanotechnology and biochemistry applications."

(From: Glove Boxes protect user from hazardous particulates

"There are two kinds of ethicists. The first kind makes you think about what it is you want, and why. The second kind tells you what you should want. The first kind of ethicist is very valuable. The second can be damaging."

(From: Exploring Nano-Ethics

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