NanoArt: When Science And Technology Meet Art I By Aarti Kapoor

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Light through a Pinhole 2: Colloidal graphite dried in Liquid Nitrogen. (Image courtesy of Cris Orfescu) 

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He may be creating art from small things, but Cris Orfescu is no stranger to the art world. Working from real images of structures that he creates at molecular and atomic scale, Orfescu has for the past 30 years combined his background in science and art to develop fascinating, three-dimensional, and often boldly colorful work depicting the nanouniverse.

The New York Times called his work at the nanoscale as “invitations to let color and shape-shifting run wild”. The French magazine Stuff had this to say about him (translated): "Cris Orfescu lives in a fun universe, populated by phantasmagoric creatures which one would say come from another planet." 

The art form, known as NanoArt, has been steadily gaining popularity around the world, with many universities and scientific societies organizing NanoArt contests. Orfescu explains to NanoScienceWorld how NanoArt represents a new Renaissance and the most innovative way to promote an understanding of nanotechnology. FULL STORY

Australian study: Most effective nano-sunscreens might also be the most toxic I By Aarti Kapoor

Australia — The most effective nanoparticle-containing sunscreens may also come at the cost of being the most harmful, according to an Australian study published online recently in Nature NanotechnologyFULL STORY

Scientists create self-powered nanowire devices, potential to charge small electronics like cell phones I By Aarti Kapoor


Georgia Tech professor Zhong Lin Wang holds an improved nanogenerator containing 700 rows of nanowire arrays. The generator was used to power nanometer-scale sensors. Photo: Gary Meek. Image source: Georgia Institute of Technology news release.

Atlanta, GEORGIA — Have you ever gone for a long walk, only to discover halfway through that your cell phone was flat and you needed to recharge it? 

Now, scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology have created new and improved nano-sized power generators — small enough to be potentially used for charging cell phones, yet mighty enough to convert a light wind, ocean waves and even human physical motion into power capable of recharging an AA battery. FULL STORY

Google steering nanotechnology public debate toward more health-themed issues, study suggests I By Aarti Kapoor

Madison, WISCONSIN — Online audiences are increasingly searching for and finding results on health-related topics when seeking nanotechnology content on Google, according to a recent study by researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW-Madison). 

The researchers – who analyzed Google's data for nanotechnology-related search terms and the associated Google suggestions from October 2008 to September 2009 – noted in their study that this trend may have an impact on how the public perceives nanotechnology, and may increasingly shift the public debate away from economic or scientific considerations. FULL STORY

Melanin-covered nanoparticles may aid cancer patients in radiation therapy I By Aarti Kapoor

Bronx, NEW YORK — Radiation therapy is often used to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors, but the amount of radiation must be limited due to its negative side-effects — one of them being the destruction of bone-marrow stem cells. Melanin — the naturally occurring pigment that gives skin and hair its color — has been shown to protect against radiation. However, due to its insoluble nature, it has been a challenge to get melanin into the bone marrow of patients — until now.   

Scientists at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University recently found that it may be possible for melanin to be delivered to the bone marrow by intravenously administering melanin-covered nanoparticles into cancer patients. FULL STORY

Nano Blog: Internet - The Great Leveller in Addressing Nanotechnology Knowledge Gap I By Aarti Kapoor

The World Wide Web has for many years now been the Great Leveller when it comes to accessing knowledge and information. So it is not surprising to know that a recent study found that the Internet is one of the most effective tools in closing the existing knowledge gap in nanotechnology among Americans. FULL BLOG

Nano Blog: Cake takes center stage at nanotechnology talk I By Aarti Kapoor

There is a Spanish proverb that says “the belly rules the mind”. So for all you food lovers out there, if you’re having trouble digesting the complex science behind the nanotechnology phenomenon, Dr. Andrew Maynard, director of the Risk Science Center at the University of Michigan School of Public Health, seems to have the answer. FULL BLOG