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Nano-Deconstruction within Society

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Nano-Deconstruction within
Amber McElwee
Issues in Science & Technology
Dr. Demers
March 17, 2009
What These New Technologies Are
Nanotechnology is the engineering
of functional systems at the
molecular scale.
It is the creation of matter, instead of
building compound from those that
already exist it is taking atom by
atom to create new matter. Most of
the time using many metallic
elements; such as gold silver
titanium and zinc. Combined with
carbon they create what scientist
call nano-bots. Their compounds
can be controlled and programs to
do what companies would need
them for.
“I want to build a billion tiny factories,
models of each other, which are
manufacturing simultaneously. . . The
principles of physics, as far as I can see,
do not speak against the possibility of
maneuvering things atom by atom. It is
not an attempt to violate any laws; it is
something, in principle, that can be done;
but in practice, it has not been done
because we are too big.” — Richard
Feynman, Nobel Prize winner in physics
Can be made into robots, mechanical
arms, and whole computers
Government use: listening devices,
surveillance monitors
How Far it has Come
2000 BC – Egyptians used chemistry to make lead sulfide (nanocrystals) into
hair dye
BC - Romans made gold chloride into molten glass produced nano sized gold
spheres which reflected in light as a ruby red color
1959 - The term nanotechnology is coined by Richard P. Feynman
- "The principles of physics, as far as I can see, do not speak against the
possibility of maneuvering things atom by atom."
1974 - First electronic device is patented by Aviram and Seiden
1980’s (early) - Development of Quantum Dots, nanosized crystals, that are
semiconductor material, different sizes of the matieral had different colors
and could be used in medical imaging and lasers
1985 - Bucky Balls are created, a product of 60 carbon atoms
1989 - IBM scientist Don Eigler created Scanning tunneling microscopes, not
only to see at nanoscopic scale but also use them like tweezers and move
single atoms at a time
1991 - Nanotubes built up together in sheets, they are 5 times less dense than
steel but 50 times stronger
1990’s - Products enter the market
Examples of new nanotechnology applications in personal care products include:
• Penetration enhancer - Encapsulating or suspending key ingredients in so-called
nanospheres or nanoemulsions, increases their penetration into the skin:
• L’Oreal (which ranks No. 6 in nanotechnology patent holders in the U.S.) has used
polymer nanocapsules to deliver active ingredients, e.g. retinol or Vitamin A, into the
deeper layers of skin. In 1998 the company unveiled Plentitude Revitalift, an antiwrinkle cream using nanoparticles.
• Freeze 24/7, a new anti-wrinkle skincare line is planning to incorporate
nanotechnology in future products.
• La Prairie’s product, the Dollars 500 Skin Caviar Intensive Ampoule Treatment,
claims to minimize the look of uneven skin pigmentation, lines and wrinkles in six
weeks using nanotechnology. La Prairie’s vice president of retail marketing and
training, Holly Genovese, says the nanoemulsions in the product “optimize the
delivery of functional ingredients into the skin and allow these materials to get to the
site of action quicker”.
• Procter & Gamble’s Olay brand was designed with nanoemulsion technology in
2005. Other companies using nanotech in their skin products as of 2005 include:
Mary Kay and Clinique from Lauder; Neutrogena, from Johnson & Johnson; Avon;
and the Estee Lauder brand.
• Hair products – using nanoemulsions to encapsulate active ingredients and carry
them deeper into hair shafts.
• PureOlogy began experimenting with nanoemulsions in 2000 when the company’s
founder set out to create a product line especially developed for color treated hair.
• Sunscreens – the zinc and titanium in sunscreens are “micronized”, making them
transparent, less greasy, less smelly and more absorbable into the skin.
• DDF planned more nanotech-enhanced anti-aging products as of 2004.
• Colorescience markets a product named Sunforgettable, a powder which contains
titanium dioxide nanoparticles. Paris-based
• Caudalie launched its Vinosun Anti-Aging Suncare, a sunscreen and anti-aging
treatment that relies on “nanomized” UV filters and antioxidants, in the US in 2003.
Source: IEHN
Where They Are Now
• Because of their size, they
are considerable fragile and
their properties can alter and
have “unforeseen toxic
• 87% of consumers are
unaware of the technologies
they are using
• There are 67 cosmetics
companies that are using
nanotechnologies, only 17
comment on their uses and
only 8 of them were willing
to say how they use the
This Will Affect Everyone
Friends of the Earth issued a report in May 2006:
“Nanomaterials, sunscreens and cosmetics: small ingredients –
big risks”. The report listed a number of concrete applications
taken from the Wilson Center Inventory: “Products listed in this
database include deodorants, soap, toothpastes, shampoos,
hair conditioners, sunscreens, anti-wrinkle creams,
moisturizers, foundations, face powders, lipstick, blush, eye
shadow, nail polish, perfumes and after-shave lotions.
Manufacturers include L’Oréal, Estée Lauder, Procter and
Gamble, Shiseido, Chanel, Beyond Skin Science LLC, Revlon,
Dr Brandt, SkinCeuticals, Dermazone Solutions, and many
more. (…) Nanoscale ingredients listed in the database include
nanoparticles of titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, alumina, silver,
silicon dioxide, calcium fluoride and copper, as well as
nanosomes, nanoemulsions and nanoencapsulated delivery
systems.” [Friends of the Earth, 2006, p. 14]
Many Possibilities
“Modern sunscreens contain insoluble titanium dioxide (TiO2) or zinc oxide
(ZnO) nanoparticles (NP), which are colorless and reflect/scatter ultraviolet
(UV) more efficiently than larger particles. “
Nanoparticles are insoluable and the properties are unstable and can change
at any moment, therefore health risks are an issue, they also have the ability to
duplicate, if this happens to the nanoparticles within the body this “gray goo
matter” will be very unstable
There are NO specific regulations within the Unisted States that prohibit any
uses of nanomaterial whether ingested or not. There are nanomaterials within
dietary supplements, even though those are ingested there is still no regulation
As of right now there is only research that says nanoparticles have not yet
been proven detrimental to people, and that at the moment we should simplel
limit our use of them
The FDA is starting to establish a system Centers for regulation in the future.
There will not be an overall nano regulation there will be different categories,
such as drug and device
They have developed the group NanoTechnology Interest Group (NTIG) to
oversee all Centers
Taking A Stand
The president devoted $256 million to nano research and understanding the risks
involved. – Why the need for so much money if there is a possibility the substance is
In 2006 $68 million went to research in Environmental Health Safety (EHS), that is 80%
more than what was spent on primary research of the topic itself
“[…] nanosized particles to be transported through cell walls and other
biological barriers in ways that are different from their macroscale
counterparts. These properties can be used to make better batteries, to
deliver drugs where they are needed, and to clean contaminated soil and
groundwater. The ability to control matter at the nanometer scale is leading
to technological advances in many areas, including energy, medicine, and
the environment. “
Because of the size and strength of the nanofibers they have the possibilities to
cause the same diseases as asbestos fibers
Web site of the journal Nature Nanotechnology discussed an experiment done
with mice. Injected them with nanotubes others with asbestos. All the mice
died, all had lessons on the lungs, both of similar construct of asbestos and
How to Be Nano-Free
• Sunscreens:
• Cosmetics:
Alba Botanica
Avalon Organics
Black Opal
Chattem, Inc. -- Bullfrog
Lakeview Laboratories -Tatoo Goo
Schwarzkopf & Henkel
•These Ones Have Nanos
Alba Botanica
Avalon Organics
Kiss My Face
Pangea Organics
Erth Minerals
Dockers – Go Khaki
Eddie Bauer – Water Shorts
(Many clothes that were stain
resistant, water resitant,
odor/sweat control)
New Balance – Clothing - Skye
Barney’s New York Products
The Body Works – Facial
Here is the most complete list of every product with Nanotechnology in it.
Taking A Stand
Nanotechnology is too un-advanced for
companies to allow products into the
consumer market. There needs to be
regulations put into effect that will prevent
products with nanos, that are potentially
ingested (dietary supplements) or
transferred into the bloodstream, from
entering the open market.
There are many ways in which
technology helps numerous parts of
society. However there must be a limit as
to how far companies are allowed to go
to make a dollar. Nanotechnology is a
great idea for the future, but
experimentation should be limited to the
laboratories, not the shelves of stores.
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