Nano Essay

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Nanotechnology is the use and control of tiny matter, this tiny matter is referred as nanoparticles. * They are measured in nanometres (nm), a nanometre is one billionth of a metre (0.000 000 001m) Nanoparticles: On a large scale, forces of attraction can be weak, but on a Nano scale are strong. Surface to ratio volume, in nanoparticles is very large. Nanoparticles can be added to materials to give them different properties. This diagram shows that, the left cube has the same volume as the smaller cubes added together on the right. However, the total surface area is much larger for the smaller cubes. Atoms on the surface of a material are often more reactive than those in the centre, so a larger surface area means the material is more reactive. Nanoparticles are added to plastics in sports equipment, e.g. tennis rackets, golf clubs and golf balls. They make the plastic much stronger and more durable, but they don’t add weight. Uses of nanoparticles: * Sports equipment: nanoparticles are added to materials to make them stronger whilst often being lighter. They have been used in tennis rackets, golf clubs and shoes * Clothing: silver nanoparticles have been added to socks. This stops them from absorbing the smell of sweaty feet as the nanoparticles have antibacterial properties * Healthcare: nanoparticles are used in sunscreens. They offer protection and can be rubbed in so there are no white marks. Drawbacks: Nanoparticles may be toxic to people, as they may be able to enter the brain from the bloodstream and cause harm. Some people would like tests taken, before nanotechnology of materials is used on a wider scale. Fullerenes: they are molecules of carbon, shaped like closed tubes or hollow balls. Fullerenes can be used to ‘cage’ other molecules. The structure forms around another atom or molecule, which is trapped inside.

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