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OSHA Nano-Workplace Factsheet

OSHA’s factsheet for working safely nanomaterials in the workplace suggests including the following basics in worker training and instruction:

• Identification of nanomaterials the employer uses and the processes in which they are used;

• Results from any exposure assessments conducted at the work site;

• Identification of engineering and administrative controls and personal protective equipment (PPE) to reduce exposure to nanomaterials;

• The use and limitations of PPE; and

• Emergency measures to take in the event of a nanomaterial spill or release.

OSHA also recommends using its on-site consultation services for employers attempting to address potential exposure to nanomaterials in the workplace and states that “On-site consultation services are separate from enforcement and do not result in penalties or citations.”…

Reminder: EPA Comment Period Closing

Just a reminder that the extended comment period for EPA’s proposed rule regarding reporting and recordkeeping requirements for certain nanoscale materials closes August 5, 2015. Readers can find a copy of the proposed rule here:!documentDetail;D=EPA-HQ-OPPT-2010-0572-0001…

And now for something slightly different: SEC Updates Keeping Ahead of the Regulatory Curve

 Our colleagues on our sister blogsite Federal Securities Law Blog have been tracking new and updated SEC regulations that could impact on the businesses of our readers.  The  articles in their most recent eBook  SEC Updates: Keeping Ahead of the Regulatory Curve (which you can download here ) discuss three important SEC regulatory changes: compensation committee rules, conflict minerals reporting and whether companies that use social media to communicate with investors are complying with Regulation Fair Disclosure. …



"A thing of beauty" , as John Keats once wrote, may be "a joy forever", but works of art, whether they are sculptures, paintings, buildings, or books, do not last forever. Over time, delicate pigments fade, restoration or conservation attempts may go wrong, or objects of art may be attacked, such as the attack by Laszlo Toth on Michelangelo’s Pieta or the more recent destruction of theBuddhas of Bamiyan by the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2001.

While it may not be able to prevent vandalism, the Nanoforart project has taken on the task of appling nanotechnology to preserving and conserving works of art:

The main objective of the NANOFORART proposal is the development and experimentation of new nano-materials and responsive systems for the conservation and preservation of movable and immovable artworks.

While the progress in material science has generated sophisticated nanostructured materials, conservation of cultural heritage is still mainly based on traditional methods and conventional materials that often lack the necessary  compatibility with the original artworks and a durable performance in responding to the changes of natural environment and man-made activities.

The main challenge of NANOFORART is the combination of sophisticated functional materials arising from the recent developments in nano-science/technology with innovative techniques in the restoration and preventive conservation of works of art, with unprecedented efficiency.

An earlier posting on this site discussed the use of nanomaterials to preserve and conserve artifacts found at archealogical excavation sites, the use of such nanomaterials to preserve works of …

First-to-File Patent System Arrives March 16, 2013

With significant changes to law governing how the U.S. grants patents taking effect next month, Porter Wright recommends that all clients consider filing any contemplated patent applications by March 15. This includes filing non-provisional patent applications, and in some cases Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) patent applications, that are based upon any provisional or non-U.S. patent application filed since March 2012. Though there are some exceptions to this advice, waiting until after March 15 may be problematic.

In brief: For patent applications having any claim with an effective filing date after March 15, it will no longer be possible to overcome prior art by showing an earlier date of invention. Thus, the prior art for purposes of patentability will include: 1) third-party public disclosures of any kind, anywhere in the world, prior to your effective filing date; and 2) issued U.S. patents and published U.S. or PCT patent applications that were effectively filed before your effective filing date. In addition to not being able to "swear behind" a prior art reference by proving an earlier date of invention, the prior art date for patents and published patent applications may be as much as 18 months earlier than under current law because of foreign priority claims.

It is also important to note that inventors will not lose the benefit of any earlier provisional or non-U.S. patent application should they wait until after March 15 to file. Any claims that are adequately supported in the earlier filing will be entitled to that earlier filing …

New Chairman of House Committee on Science, Space and Technology

The 113th Congress has begun it’s first session and, as is the usual procedure at the start of a new Congress, new chairpersons have been selected for most of the House and Senate Committees. Among these new chairs is Representive Lamar S. Smith (R-TX-21st), Chair of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. Much of the legislation that has affected nanoindustry and the nanotech community has passed before this committee.

Rep. Smith as long been a supporter of the nanotech community, co-sponsoring such legislation as the "National Nanotechnology Initiative Amendments Act of 2009". and is a senior member of the Congressional Nanotechnology Caucus. 

Along with a new committee chairperson, the subcommittees have also gotten new chairs. The Subcommittee on Research and Education, which "has legislative jurisdiction and general oversight and investigative authority on all matters relating to science policy and science education including: . . . research, development, and demonstration relating to nanoscience, nanoengineering, and nanotechnology", is now chaired by Rep. Larry Bucshon (R-IN-8th). Rep. Bucshon, first elected in the 2010 midterm elections, has not sponsored or co-sponsored much legislation and his positions on nanotechnology and nanoindustry are as yet unknown.

Legislation affecting either nanoindustry or the larger nanotech community has yet to be introduced in either the House or the Senate; such legislation may benefit from having Rep. Smith as Committee Chairperson.…

Silver Nanoparticles: NIOSH Seeks Information and Comment

Today’s Federal Register carries a notice from the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety (NIOSH) requesting information and comments regarding silver nanoparticles. NIOSH

has initiated an evaluation of the scientific data on silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) to ascertain the potential health risks to workers and to identify gaps in knowledge so that appropriate laboratory and field research studies can be conducted. . . .

. . . gathering data to determine whether a health risk to workers may exist from exposure to AgNPs and if specific risk management guidance is needed to prevent exposure. . . .  

Information is particularly needed for determining the relevance of bile duct hyperplasia and hepatocellular necrosis observed in AgNP exposed rats, as well as information on: (1) Sources of AgNP exposure, (2) factors that influence worker’s exposure, (3) in-place exposure control measures (e.g., engineering controls) and work practices that are effective in reducing worker exposures, and (4) appropriate measurement methods and exposure metrics for characterizing workplace exposures. . . .

Examples of requested information include the following:     (1) Identification of industries or occupations in which exposures to AgNPs may occur.     (2) Trends in the production and use of AgNPs.     (3) Description of work tasks and scenarios with a potential for exposure to AgNPs.     (4) Workplace exposure measurement data in various types of industries and jobs.     (5) Case reports or other health information demonstrating potential health effects in workers exposed to AgNPs.     (6) Research findings from in vitro and …

‘Tis the Season For Holiday Workplace Issues

It’s that time of year – crowded shopping centers, festive gatherings, and time with family both near and far.

  For employers the holidays create increased risk of employer liability – which may result in legal problems for those that are unprepared.  Members of our Labor and Employment practice publish the Employer Law Report, which today posted a timely eBook compiling the top five holiday headaches for employers.  As many may find the topic of interest, we wanted to take a moment and share it with our readers as well.

The ebook complies the following posts:

·         Avoiding Holiday Party Liability When the Office Santa Tries to Teach His Employees a Few"Reindeer Games"

·         Being Inclusive Without Being A Grinch

·         "Holiday Attire" Does Not Include "Beer Goggles"

·         Holiday Pay and How Not to Get Scrooged by The FLSA

·         What if Santa Was the One Who Got Run Over By a Reindeer

·         Three FMLA Stocking Stuffers:  How to Avoid a Big Lump of Coal  (bonus)…

New study of nanoparticle skin penetration

As engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) become increasingly common in consumer products and the environment, concern over their possible effects on human health also rises. There is concern over the possible penetration of human skin by ENPs. "However, the evidence whether nanoparticles can infiltrate into underlying tissues is conflicting . . .  clarification of the issue is essential. . .."

With this in mind, Christopher. S.J. Campbell of Mango Business Solutions, L. Roderigo Contreras-Rojas, M. Begona Delgado-Charro, and Richard H. Guy, of the University of Bath Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology have recently published a study "Objective assessment of nanoparticle disposition in mammalian skin after topical exposure" in the Journal of Controlled Release discussin the results of their attempts to measure the extent and depth that ENPs are able to penetrate the skin, in the case of this study the specially cleaned and prepared skin of a pig.

Following exposure to ENPs, the skin samples were examined using a laser scanning  confocal microscope. The reported results indicate that ENPs did not fully penetrate the skin, but only penetrated where a crease or a crack in the skin was present.

The authors note and warn about the limited nature of their research:

It should be emphasised that this research has clearly not been able to make a systematic evaluation of nanoparticle disposition on the skin for the entire spectrum of particle properties, including shape and charge. . . .the observations and their analysis cannot explain, with any degree of … announces webinar for 09/20/2012

In a notice that appeared in last Thursday’s Federal Register, the National Nanotechnology Coordination Office (NNCO), announced that it would be hosting a webinar on on Thursday 09/20/2012, from 12:15 until 1PM. " NNCO is seeking public comment and recommendations on potential updates to, improvements on, and opportunities for public engagement through"

The webinar will consist of two parts. Part 1, the first 20 minutes of the webinar, will be spent on short presentations by the moderator and four panelists:

                              Marlowe Epstein-Newman pic

Moderator: Marlowe Epstein-Newman, National Nanotechnology Coordination Office (NNCO)—Marlowe is the Communications Director at NNCO and was the Project Manager for the first redesign in 2011. She manages the content on as well as the NNI’s social media presence.      



  Carl Batt pic

Panelists: Carl Batt, Cornell University—Carl is a Food Science professor with ties to National Science Foundation as a regularly consulted expert. Carl recently collaborated with the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network and Walt Disney World to create a permanent nanotechnology exhibit at Epcot Center.


Josh Chamot pic


Joshua A,  Chamot, National Science Foundation (NSF)—Josh is a public affairs specialist in NSF’s Office of Legislative and Public Affairs. As a seasoned public affairs professional, he provides a unique perspective on media, public relations, and outreach tactics from a Federal Government perspective. Josh works in a variety of media to bring science stories to the public.



Latko pic


Mary Ann Latko, American Industrial Hygiene Association(AIHA)—Mary Ann is a Managing Director at …

Rice University at 100: Congressional Remarks

Rice University, located in the city of  Houston, Texas, is observing it’s 100th anniversary in October of this year, and many of the Texan members of the US House of Representives have made congratulatory remarks on the floor of the House or have inserted them in the Congressional Record Extension of Remarks.In their remarks, Rep. John Culbertson (R-7th) and Rep. K. Michael Conway (R-17th) paid particular attention to Rice’s role in the nanotech world. Their remarks are below.

RICE UNIVERSITY’S 100TH ANNIVERSARY — (House of Representatives – July 11, 2012) [Page: H4790]

   (Mr. CULBERSON asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)

   Mr. CULBERSON. Madam Speaker, I have the singular privilege of representing Rice University, and I join my colleagues from Houston in recognizing and congratulating them on their 100th anniversary this year.

   Rice has consistently been ranked as one of the Nation’s greatest universities and recognized by U.S. News & World Report as among the Nation’s top 20 universities. And they’ve consistently ranked in the top 50 universities in the world.

   Rice University researchers are pioneers in a broad spectrum of fields, including space, energy, and my personal passion, nanotechnology. Nanotechnology is an absolute game-changer, revolutionizing everything that we will touch and see in the 21st century. Rice University is the birthplace of nanotechnology research.

   Nanotechnology holds incredible potential for everything from curing cancer to improving the storage and transmission of electricity and moving electricity in ways …

Affordable Care Act: The Supreme Court Issues it’s Opinion

As many readers of this blog are by now aware, the Supreme Court  today issued its much anticipated opinion in National Federation of Business et al v. Sebelius, regarding the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act (PL 111-148), more commonly refered to as "Obamacare".  Because of the importance of this decision, we’re attaching a link to another blog site maintained by Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP, "Employee Benefits Law Report", and to an entry , "Health Care Reform Survives Supreme Court Scrutiny – But Not Entirely Intact", authored by Rich McHugh, a partner in the Porter Wright DC office. Rich’s practice focuses on employee benefits. A link to the decision is embedded within the article.…

Results of a pilot study on non-human primates and quantum dots

Several studies of possible toxic effects of quantum dots on humans have been done using cell cultures in petri dishes or rodents, usually white lab rats. But lab rats are related to humans only in that both are mammals.

In a recently published letter in Nature Nanotechnology,"A pilot study in non-human primates shows no adverse response to intravenous injection of quantum dots", published online 05/20/2012, Ling Ye and other authors based at PLA General Hospital in Beijing, SUNY-Buffalo, Nanyang Technological University, and Changchun University of Science and Technology, report the results of experiments where quantum dots where injected into male rhesus monkeys. Rhesus monkeys were chosen for this experiment since they are genetically and physiologically closer to humans than rodents and are less endangered than chimpanzees.

The authors report that the rhesus monkeys did not exhibit any ill effects from the injections:

A complete blood count (cbc) was performed at regular intervals and the results did not suggest any acute toxicity.

After 90 days, the study did find that quantum dots had accumulated in the liver, spleen, and kidneys and in lesser amounts in the heart, lungs, and other organs. Examinations of tissues from these organs found no abnormalities.

In conclusion, rhesus macaques intravenously injected with ~ 25 mg of a cadmium based quantum dot formulation survived without any evidence of toxicity. All measured biochemical markers were in the normal range. . . .However, given the persistence of elevated cadmium and selenium levels in …

Heat and Nanoparticles in Water

As nanoparticles become more commonly used in everyday products  it becomes increasingly important to understand " nanoparticle aggregation in the aqueous environment . . .  for assessing the fate, transport and toxicity of nanomaterials".  In an effort to increase the body of scientific knowledge in this area, Dongxu Zhou, Samuel W. Bennett, and Arturo A. Keller, all of the University of California Santa Barbara Bren School of Environmental Science and Management, in an article published on the PLOS One website "report for the first time . . . temperature variations can cause either agglomeration or disagglomeration . . . depending on the heating and cooling paths. This finding is very relevant . . . , since it indicates that ambient temperature change, constantly occurring in open waters, can alter nanoparticle mobility." Following  studies cited in the article’s references, the authors define aggregates  as "particle clusters bound by irreversible chemical bonds", while agglomerates are "clusters" held together by weak physical interactions. " Once released in the environment, nanoparticles will very likely exist as agglomerated aggregates, i.e. aggregate clusters that have weaker bonds between them. "

In experiments on clusters of three types of metallic oxides – titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, and cerium oxide – lead the authors to conclude

. . . that in open water these soft (weakly bonded) agglomerates can be disagglomerated by common environmental stimuli, such as exposure to sunlight or an increase in temperature from diurnal variations. Although not evaluated, it is likely that mechanical shocks may also …

S. 3187, “Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act” passes in Senate

Prior to adjourning for the Memorial Say recess, the Senate, on 05/24/2012, by a vote of 96-1, passed  S. 3187, the "Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act", " To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to revise and extend the user-fee programs for prescription drugs and medical devices, to establish user-fee programs for generic drugs and biosimilars, and for other purposes", after previously adopting an amendment in the nature of a substitute-  an amendment in the nature of a substitute strips all of the language of a bill following the enacting clause and replaces it with new language – offered by Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa). Included as part of the language of the amendment was Title XI – Other Provisions, Subtitle C- Misc. Provisions, Section 1133, "Nanotechnology Regulatory Science Program":


    (a) In General- Chapter X (21 U.S.C. 391 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:


    `(a) In General- Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act, the Secretary, in consultation as appropriate with the Secretary of Agriculture, shall establish within the Food and Drug Administration a Nanotechnology Regulatory Science Program (referred to in this section as the `program’) to enhance scientific knowledge regarding nanomaterials included or intended for inclusion in products regulated under this Act or other statutes administered by the Food and Drug Administration, to address

Naturally produced nanoparticles and food

The possible presence of  nanoparticles in food has, for the last few years, been a controversial topic, focusing usually on the possible toxic effects of manufactured carbon nanoparticles (MCNs)  on human health. A recently published article by members of the Departments of Chemistry and Biotechnology at the Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati, "Presence of Amorphous Carbon Nanoparticles in Food Caramels", looked at a different aspect of the contoversy, naturally produced carbon nanoparticles. As the authors point out, naturally produced carbon nanoparticles (CNPs) have possibly been present in various types of food for thousands of years and offer the possibility of being used as vehicles for the delivery of medications within the human body.

In their study, Prof. Arun Chattopadhyay and colleagues tested "regular carbohydrate based food caramels, such as bread, jaggery, corn flakes, and biscuits . . . . where the preparation of food maily involves heating the starting ingredients in the absence of water, leading to the formation of caramels", for the presence of CNPs, which were detected. The CNPs were not of a uniform size, as would be expected with  MCNs but were of various sizes, "indicating temperature dependent formation". More importantly

These caramels containing CNPs have been consumed by human beings with no know toxicity and thus it can be considered to have no or minimum risk on human health and be used as a safe nanomaterial.

All of these are foods that, as the authors note, "have been consumed by humans for centuries, and thus they can be considered …

Progress in the Commercialization of Graphene

European Plastics News posted an article on it’s site last week,("Graphene developers seek routes out of the lab"), focusing on challenges to and progress in the commercialization of graphene, specifically its "potential as a mutlifunctional reinforcement in composites".

Among the challenges the article raises are:

1) Entangling of 3D carbon nanotubes (CNTS) bundles

2) Individual graphite sheets restacking themselves

3) Handling of such shets during transportation to processing facilities

4) Reduction of costs of production and transportation

5) A need to develop standard operating procedures for potential health hazards

While these challenges may seem daunting, the success of three companies – Vorbeck Materials of Maryland,Cabot Corporation of Massachusetts, and Thomas Swan & Co., based in the United Kingdom – are highlighted.

The article also discusses the ongoing support of  the European Commission (EC) and the UK’s government of research in graphene and how to commercialize it.:

The European Commission is planning to channel €1bn over 10 years into co-ordinated graphene research and commercialisation. The UK government has announced it wants to spend another £50m (€60.7m) to keep the UK at the forefront of graphene research, with the University of Manchester set to host a national institute of graphene research. Commercialisation of graphene by this route could arrive by late 2012.

Converted in US dollars, the EC will be spending $1.278 billion and the UK $78.153 million.…

An Interview with Senator Ron Wyden

The New Haven Independent regularly covers the nanotech field, from the latest experiment in using nanoparticles to deliver medications more efficently to discussions of how nanoindustry will affect the national and regional economies. Recently the New Haven Independent posted an edited transcript of an internview with Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), a long time advocate of Nanotech research and Nanoindustry in the US Senate and one of the Co-chairs of the Congressional Nanotechnology Caucus.

Topics covered in the interview ranged from Wyden’s work on reauthorizing the National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI):

I very much want reauthorization before the end of the year. I think the Commerce Committee, Chairman [Jay] Rockefeller and others, have felt strongly about this and have watched this sort of bump up against the schedule again and again and again …

If ever there was a bipartisan fit for the Senate right now, and a chance to put us on the right side in terms of taking bolder action in a tough international competition with Europe and Asia, this is the time, and that’s the case I’m going to be making.

I consider the 21st Century bill that I wrote nine years ago one of the most important things I’ve done in my time in public service. 

to training a workforce that will be able to fill the good paying jobs that nanoindustry is and will be offering now and in the future.…

Nanotechnology and “Soft Law”

Noting that nanotechnology and nanoindustries have emerged during a period when both the power and ability of government agencies, both on the Federal and State levels, to regulate commerce in all of it’s myriad forms has come under debate and "renewed interest in regulatory reform" and is being "replaced by new governance approaches seeking to transform regulation from [an] agency-centric excercise in setting incentives to a collarborative undertaking by actors from multiple segments of society" Professor Timothy F. Malloy of the UCLA School of Law, in a short essay "Soft Law and Nanotechnology: A Functional Perspective", examines"soft law" in the regulation of nanoindustry. "Soft law", in this study, rises from multiple sources, "established standards of behavior and . . . is not legally binding".

Professor Malloy briefly describes four functions of soft law:

1- Precursive function: Laying the groundwork

" The precursive function refers to the use of soft law to lay the groundwork for later hard law instruments. . . . often [taking] the form of voluntary programs aimed at collecting information needed to design conventional hard law programs. . . . Precursive soft law programs may also focus on taking potential regulatory approaches, methodologies or standards for ‘test drives’, hoping to inform or improve the design of the later mandatory program."

2- Normative Function: Leveraging Social Norms

"The normative function refers to the soft law program’s capacity to support the formation and activation of norms of behavior among the targeted population of businesses. . . .Here the program …

Women in Europe for a Common Future Issues Position Paper: Nano the Great Unknown

Women in Europe for a Common Future, (WECF) founded in the Netherlands in 1994, " is a network of 100 member organizations and individual members who share a common concern to promote a healthy environment for all, strengthen the role of women and promote a gender and rights based approach in environment and sustainable development policy and implementation." Recently, WECF issued a position paper, "Nano: The Great Unknown". WECF takes the position that "Neither the industry nor public authorities have shown adequate leadership and willingness in addressing" the possible toxic effects of manufactured nanomaterials (MNMs) on humans and the environment.

After briefly surveying European Union (EU) and non-EU regulatory efforts and finding them all lacking, the WECF calls for applying the precautionary principle and the principle of "no data, no market" for all nanomaterials and products containing nanomaterials.

WECF demands that full information about possible risks of nanoparticles as well as access to information on which products contain nanomaterials should be provided to the public, including developing countries) without delay.

The position paper then presents seven additional demands or "actions" by WECF:

1- "WECF demands that manufactured nanomaterials are treated as totally new substances."

2- " WECF demands the application of "no data, no market" – and in the case of REACH, this is to be independent of tonnage. Registration of nanomaterials under the corresponding bulk chemical should by default be prohibited."

3- "Nanosubstances should be subject to a far reaching health assessment (health, environment)."

4- "WECF asks decision-makers …

The EPA Inspector General’s Report

The task of the Inspectors General of Federal agencies is to examine "all actions of a government agency or military organization. Conducting audits and investigations, either independently or in response to reports of wrongdoing, the OIG ensures that the agency’s operations are in compliance with the law and general established policies of the government. Audits conducted by the OIG are intended to ensure the effectiveness of security procedures, or to discover the possibility of misconduct, waste, fraud, theft, or certain types of criminal activity by individuals or groups related to the agency’s operation."

At the end of 2011, the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) posted Report No. 12-P-0162,"EPA Needs to Manage Nanomaterial Risks More Effectively" to the reports section of its website.

The OIG, in the Introduction to the report, states that the

. . .  purpose of this review was to determine how effectively the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is managing the human health and environmental risks of nanomaterials.

The report notes that

EPA has the statutory authority to regulate nanomaterials. . . . EPA can regulate nanomaterials during their manufacture, formulation, distribution in commerce, use, and/or disposal through the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) . . . nanomaterials in pesticides through the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) . . . . EPA can regulate nanomaterials released into the environment using the Clean Air Act; the Clean Water Act; the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act; or the Resource Conservation …

Guide to Responsible Nano-Business

ObservatoryNANO recently published a "Guide to Responsible Nano-Business", a brief report written for an audience of "Medium sized companies involved in the development, processing, production, or trade of nanotechnology-enabled materials, components, or applications".

ObservatoryNANO was created and funded by the then extant European Community (EC), the predecessor of today’sEuropean Union (EU),  “to create a European Observatory on Nanotechnologies to present reliable, complete and responsible science-based and economic expert analysis, across different technology sectors, establish dialogue with decision makers and others regarding the benefits and opportunities, balanced against barriers and risks, and allow them to take action to ensure that scientific and technological developments are realized as socio-economic benefits.”

The Guide sets out and briefly discusses four "tools to identify and manage nanotechnology-related priorities":

Tool 1: Set priorities, focusing on the process of framing responsibility measures

Tool 2: Check and complement established internal guidelines and code of conduct

Tool 3: Focus actions, described in the guide as the "strategies and programmes [needed] to be put in place to assure that a guideline is of any practicle use".

Tool 4: Inform transparently, focusing on what to communicate (content), how to communicate to employees of the company, customers and/or the general public, and the choice of communication media, ranging from company websites to product labels.

The Guide has links to "Good Practice Examples", such as BASF‘s Code of Conduct and to sites where more information can be found.

While the Guide to Responsible Nano-Business is not on the same level as …

National Science Foundation 2013 Budget Request

As part of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 budget appropriations process, Dr. Subra Suresh, Director of the National Science Foundation (NSF), appeared before the House Committee on Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science,  and Related Agencies on Tuesday, 03/06/2012, to present and respond to the subcommittee members questions about the NSF’s proposed 2013 budget.

According to Dr. Suresh’s prepared statement, the 2013 request, "totals $7.373 billion, an increase of $340.0 million (4.8 percent) over the FY 2012 enacted level . . . . [Providing] increased support for core programs in fundemental research and education in all fields of science and engineering".

Dr. Suresh’s prepared statement reflects the reality of budget constraints imposed by the Federal government’s need to reduce the level of the Federal deficit. noting that "As good stewards of the public trust, we have reduced or eliminated lower priority programs . . . . "

Among the programs targeted for reductions in funding are the Nanoscale Science and Engineering Centers (NSECS). . . .

because the state of research in this area has matured significantly and the research should advance more rapidly in  a different, more use-inspired research center program. Several NSECS grants may transition to the Nanosystems Engineering Research Centers (NERCS) as the nanodevices and processes created at graduating NSECSs move to the systems level and potential commercialization. NSF will continue to support eleven NSECs in FY 2013 including the Nanomanufacturing ERC.

As described in a 2001 program solicitation the NSECs could be be "based …

2012 Regional, State and Local Initiatives in Nanotechnology Workshop

Today’s issue of the Federal Register carries a "Notice of Public Meeting", announcing the 2012 Regional, State and Local (RSL) Initiatives in Nanotechnology workshop, to be held 1-2 May in Portland, Oregon.

This workshop will bring together leaders of regional, state, and local organizations to engage in dialog with the Federal government; economic development groups; investors and entrepreneurs; technology leaders; and scientists and engineers from industry, business, government, and academia. The discussion will address a wide range of resource, organizational, and policy issues impacting RSL nanotechnology initiatives.  

Principal themes addressed in the workshop will include:

  • Current landscape of U.S. RSL nanotechnology initiatives and their health

  • Current Federal resources available for RSLs

  • RSL best practices, business models, and opportunities for partnering; and

  • Role of nanotechnology RSLs in future U.S. economic growth and job creation.


The workshop is cosponsored by the National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) and theOregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institutes (ONAMI).

Anyone planning to attend the workshop is required to register, either online, via e-mail ( ) or via regular US mail (  RSL 2012 Workshop, c/o NNCO, 4201 Wilson Boulevard,  Stafford II, Suite 405, Arlington, VA 22230). Registration is on a "first come, first served" basis and runs from today, March 5, 2012 until 5PM April 27, 2012. Those interested in presenting 3-5 minutes of public comments at the meeting should also register at Written or  electronic comments should be submitted by email to  until April 27, 2012. The workshop …