Nanotechnology will have a huge impact around the world, in one way or another every individual in society will be reached by this technology. That is why more control and tight regulation is being discussed and demanded.
“Responsible Nanotechnology” should be ensured, focusing on good management and monitoring potential risks and maximizing benefits.
This new technology advances quickly and forces us to think about how we will manage to control its misuse. Responsible nanotechnology can only happen when each person becomes aware of what this technology can cause, as creators or consumers of it.
Benefits of Nanotechnology
• Physical filters with nanometric pores can eliminate 100% bacteria, viruses, and even prions. An electrical separation technology that attracts ions, eliminating salts and heavy metals.
It could reduce water-related diseases, which account for the deaths of thousands, perhaps tens of thousands of children every day.
• Research tools and medical practice will be less expensive and more sensitive. Research and diagnostics will be more effective, enabling faster response capacity to treat new diseases.
• Numerous small sensors, computers and various low-cost implantable devices will allow continuous monitoring of patient health as well as automatic treatment.
• Using semiconductor nanotubes, logic and transistor computer circuits have been developed, increasing their speed, decreasing consumption and increasing functions.
The development of nano-memories is important to meet the increasing demands of processing capacity and memory of developing multimedia.
• The nano-cements will reduce the CO2 emissions in their manufacture by 50%, to be produced at temperatures lower than the current cement.
And also when it is used, during its setting, due to the emission of oxygen instead of CO2.
Risks of Nanotechnology
• There is not much knowledge of what the effects would be for humans to apply such revolutionary techniques.
One of the worrisome points is that factory nanoparticles can penetrate areas of the human body that are inaccessible to larger particles, and the remedy may become worse than the disease.
In addition, the nanoparticles move from the mother to the fetus through the placenta.
• Another possible consequence is that nano-energy would make it possible to manufacture lethal weapons with greater detonating force than the bombs used so far.
• Titanium dioxide and zinc oxide used as nanoparticles in sun blockers produce free radicals in skin cells, damaging DNA.
• Nanoparticles accumulate in the organs of laboratory animals (liver and lungs). This could give rise to tumors. Nanotubes similar to very thin needles could get into the lungs with effects similar to those caused by asbestos.
• It was shown that carbon nano-spheres dissolved in water, simulating a common degree of environmental contamination; damage the brain of fish and cause mortality in water fleas.
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