The word Nano refers to a nanometre (nm). Nano is a unit prefix meaning “one billionth”, this denotes a factor of 10−9. One nanometre is one-millionth of a millimeter and a single human hair is around 80,000 nanometres in width! Nanotechnology refers to a field of applied science and technology whose theme is the control of matter on the atomic and molecular scale, generally 100 nanometers or smaller, and the fabrication of devices or materials that lie within that size range. Nanotechnology is science, engineering, and technology conducted at the nanoscale. The nanoscale is about 1 to 100 nanometers.
Nanoscience and nanotechnology involve studying and working with matter on an ultra-small scale. Nanotechnologies are widely seen as having huge potential in areas as diverse as healthcare, IT, and energy storage. Governments and businesses across the world have started to invest substantially in their development.
The nanoscience and nanotechnology concepts started with a talk entitled “There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom” by physicist Richard Feynman at an American Physical Society meeting at the California Institute of Technology (CalTech) on December 29, 1959.