ISO Standards for Nanomaterials Published

Will standards for nanomaterials actually promote their commercialization

1 min read
ISO Standards for Nanomaterials Published

It seems as soon as nanomaterials were commercialized there have been efforts to establish standards for classifying them.

The ISO has been working on this issue for some time, and last year we even received updates on the progress of the working group.

The organization has recently announced its publication of a new technical report, ISO/TR 11360 Nanotechnologies – Methodology for the classification and categorization of nanomaterials, which according to the ISO, “offer[s] a comprehensive, globally harmonized methodology for classifying nanomaterials.”

The backbone of the new ISO system for classifying nanomaterials is something they are terming the “nano-tree”. As one might expect, the relationships between nanomaterials are laid out in a logical pattern like the branching out of a tree.

“The document provides users with a structured view of nanotechnology, and facilitates a common understanding of its concepts,” says Peter Hatto, Chair of the committee that developed the standard (ISO/TC 229). “It offers a systematic approach and a commonsensical hierarchy”.

Whether this type of standardization constitutes the removal of a key obstacle in the further development and commercialization of nanotechnology remains to be seen. But as they say, it can’t hurt.

It seems that efforts are ongoing to eliminate obstacles from the further commercialization of nanomaterials including this ISO report to the launching of a commodities exchange.

As fine as this no doubt is for the multi-national chemical companies who are selling and sometimes buying the bulk of these materials, it does seem odd that companies that are trying to use these materials to enable some commercial product seem to be allowed to languish into a slow, painful death.

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The Ultimate Transistor Timeline

The transistor’s amazing evolution from point contacts to quantum tunnels

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A chart showing the timeline of when a transistor was invented and when it was commercialized.

Even as the initial sales receipts for the first transistors to hit the market were being tallied up in 1948, the next generation of transistors had already been invented (see “The First Transistor and How it Worked.”) Since then, engineers have reinvented the transistor over and over again, raiding condensed-matter physics for anything that might offer even the possibility of turning a small signal into a larger one.

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