The field of engineering is quite large, encompassing many branches, such as Nano-engineering. To put it simply, the branch of Nano-engineering incorporates aspects of designing, building, and utilizing engines, machines, and objects on the nanoscale. In this manner, Nano-engineering is engineering that concerns studying, developing, and refining materials at the lowest scale (Nano) possible. Provided with that, Nano-engineering can be considered the concrete application of nanoscience, which is comparable to how mechanical engineering involves applying physics principles. Accordingly, at its core, Nano-engineering is the interaction and use of nanomaterials for making systems, structures, and devices that are smaller and useful.
As per Umemura (2018), Nano-engineering enhances prevailing applications, materials, together with industrial processes, by reducing their size to the nanoscale for ultimately exploiting their distinctive surface phenomena and quantum portent. Taking that into account, there are two reasons why Nano-engineering is important. At the onset, Nano-engineering makes it possible to use nanomaterials, which have a comparatively larger surface area. Umemura indicates that having a larger surface area is important since nanomaterials are more reactive to chemicals and how their electrical and strength properties are affected. In this way, the nanomaterials are applicable in more ways. Apart from that, Nano-engineering is also important since materials can be produced in multiple ways. To be specific, Umemura (2018) articulates that with Nano-engineering, it is possible to produce nanomaterials in all dimensions, i.e., one-dimension like nanotubes, two-dimension like graphene, and in three-dimension like nanoparticles.
For the most part, Nano-engineering involves utilizing nanotechnology for designing, producing, and applying nanomaterials. Kelkar, Herr, and Ryan (2014) suggest that to understand how Nano-engineering works, it is essential to know the meaning of the term ‘nano’ that implies dwarf. Accordingly, Kelkar et al. state that the term ‘nano’ references an object or something that is one-billionth of a unit. To put it into context, Kelkar et al. (2014) explain that a human DNA strand, which is only visible under a microscope, is less than three nanometers. As such, Nano-engineering works by manipulating objects and things at this nanoscale to make nanomaterials that can be applied in areas where the objects’ original size could not.
Sengupta and Sarkar (2015) report that electron microscope development sparked Nano-engineering as a field in engineering. In the last 10 to 15 years, Nano-engineering has been applied to improve life in several ways. For instance, Sengupta and Sarkar state that Nano-engineering enabled chemists to make polymers that are molecules comprising nanoscale molecules used to make various products, like silicone heart valves and fiberglass, among others. More importantly, Sengupta and Sarkar (2015) mention that Nano-engineering made it possible to create chips that revolutionized machines and devices. Computers made from these chips are faster and cheaper to produce, which accounts for the increasing development and use of computers and smartphones.
At present, Nano-engineering is enhancing lives in both predictable and unforeseen ways. To start, Nano-engineering is extensively improving and revolutionizing many industry and technology sectors. Sharma and Hamid (2017) discuss that most commercial products nowadays rely on nanomaterials and processes. For instance, this is evidenced by how nanomaterials make superior stain removers and degreasers that are safe to the environment. Apart from that, nanoparticles are increasingly being utilized, especially for boosting chemical reactions, saving money, and reducing pollutants. Sharma and Hamid insist that Nano-engineering is currently being used to tackle some of the world’s issues, like climate change. To be specific, Sharma and Hamid (2017) articulate that Nano-engineering is being used to mitigate climate change through the development of batteries for electric cars to reduce over-reliance on fuel. As a result, climate change is slowly being prevented since Nano-engineering delivers products that are safe to the environment.
Progress is inevitable, and this principle also applies to Nano-engineering. However, shrinking objects and things to their nanoscale can affect their performance based on how the physical properties are modified. Consequently, mastering Nano-engineering holds a lot of promise for the future since it will be possible to apply it in all aspects of modern life. The prospects are limitless, ranging from application in medicine, whereby it will be possible to monitor recovery from surgery to develop internal devices that can change and control organ functions. Likewise, Goddard, Brenner, Lyshevski, and Lafrate (2018) suggest that Nano-engineering will revolutionize computer memory to develop ultra-dense memory storage that will provide enough capacity to store the increasing quantity of data and information.
To sum up, Nano-engineering is a promising and exciting field to study. Upon graduating in Nano-engineering, it will be possible to contribute to the development of research to society by having all the required expertise for pursuing careers as medical scientists or Nano engineers. In terms of contributing to research, graduating in Nano-engineering will open many possibilities for developing and creating nanomaterials that can continue enhancing our lives.
Goddard, W. A., Brenner, D., Lyshevski, S. E., & Lafrate, G. J. (2018). Handbook of Nanoscience, Engineering, and Technology. CRC Press.
Kelkar, D. A., Herr, D. J. C., & Ryan, J. G. (2014). Nanoscience and Nano-engineering: Advances and Applications. CRC Press.
Sengupta, A., & Sarkar, C. K. (2015). Introduction to Nano: basics to nanoscience and nanotechnology. Springer Publications.
Sharma, K. V., & Hamid, N. H. B. (n2017). Engineering applications of nanotechnology: From energy to drug delivery. Cham, Switzerland: Springer Publications.
Umemura, K. (2018). Nano-engineering and materials technologies II: 6th ICNNN 2017 and ICTMA 2017: selected, peer-reviewed papers from the 6th International Conference on Nanostructures, Nanomaterials and Nano-engineering 2017 (ICNNN 2017) and 2017 the 2nd International Conference on Materials Technology and Applications (ICMTA2017), October 26-29, 2017, Tokyo, Japan.