Evie's blog

Friday, August 15, 2008

N is for Nanotechnology

Several years ago, Hewlett Packard aired a very interesting commercial entitled, 'N is for Nanotechnology'.

This commercial described future dreams about nanotechnology, 'a mobile phone so small that even an ant could use it', and 'all in the fraction of the width of a hair'.

On such small scales, quantum effects become appreciable. The tiny quantum worlds are not very easy to describe theoretically. The unpredictable nature that is quantum physics means that emergent phenomena may also be very surprising, hard to guess at, and difficult to manipulate/control.

Nanotechnology is learning how to design on the tiny, quantum scale, to harness and make use of quantum properties for very small future technologies.... and yes.... some of these will be very different to anything we have ever experienced before. That's creativity in physics!