NNI 2011 Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS) Research Strategy

Subject Area:
NNI Strategic Documents
EHS-related Documents
Author: NSET/NEHI
Publication Date: Oct. 20 2011

Description:

Nanotechnology safety benefits everyone, from lab researchers and factory workers to the consumers of products enabled by this emerging technology. Accordingly, the Federal Government has developed the 2011 NNI Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS) Research Strategy, a comprehensive approach to ensuring the safe, effective, and responsible development and use of nanotechnology.

The NNI 2011 EHS Research Strategy provides guidance to the Federal agencies that produce the scientific information for risk management, regulatory decision-making, product use, research planning, and public outreach. The core research areas providing this critical information are (1) Nanomaterial Measurement Infrastructure, (2) Human Exposure Assessment, (3) Human Health, (4) Environment,  (5) Risk Assessment and Risk Management Methods, and (6) Informatics and Modeling. Consideration of ethical, legal, and societal implications (ELSI) of nanotechnology were also woven into the strategy.

Click here to see the archived video of the webinar. (This webinar was held on October 20, 2011 to highlight the release of the NNI EHS Research Strategy. If you have not done so already, you will need to register to view the webinar. Otherwise just enter your email address to log in and click on the Flash Player link.)


Nanotechnology Fact

Nanoscale materials have been used for over a millenium. For example, nanoscale gold was used in stained glass in Medieval Europe and nanotubes were found in blades of swords made in Damascus. However, ten centuries passed before high-powered microscopes were invented, allowing us to see things at the nanoscale and begin working with materials at the nanoscale.

Nanotechnology as we now know it began about 30 years ago, when our tools to image and measure extended into the nanoscale. Around the turn of the millennium, government research managers in the United States and other countries observed that physicists, biologists, chemists, electrical engineers, optical engineers, and materials scientists were working on overlapping issues emerging at the nanoscale. In 2000, the U.S. National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) was created to help these researchers benefit from each other’s insights and accelerate the technology’s development.

To learn more, see What is Nanotechnology?

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