Nanotechnology refers broadly to a field of applied science and technology whose unifying theme is the control of matter on the atomic and molecular scale, normally 1 to 100 nanometers, and the fabrication of devices with critical dimensions that lie within that size range.
Nanotechnology is an enormously powerful set of tools that can be used to further the goals of sustainable development.
For example, nanotechnology is used the production of potable water through the means of nanofiltration. Where much of the developing world lacks access to reliable water sources, nanotechnology may alleviate these issues upon further testing as have been performed in countries, such as South Africa. It is important that solute levels in water sources are maintained and reached to provide necessary nutrients to people. And in turn, further testing would be pertinent so as to measure for any signs of nanotoxicology and any negative affects to any and all biological creatures.
Other examples can be found below:
- Hillie, Thembela and Mbhuti Hlophe. "Nanotechnology and the challenge of clean water." Nature.com/naturenanotechonolgy. November 2007: Volume 2.