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MNT520 Fundamentals of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology II | Course Guide: Web Resources

Library materials and useful resources for students at MNT520 Fundamentals of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology II compiled by Alfaisal University librarians


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Institutes and Research Centers

There are numerous regional, national, and international institutes and research centers dedicated to nanotechnology. Below is a representative list of academic, governmental, and private research organizations. The listing includes the primary affiliation and the research or educational focus of the center.

Center for Functional Nanostructures (CFN) Established in 2001, the Center for Functional Nanostructures is an interdisciplinary research center located at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Karlsruhe, Germany). Research areas include nanophotonics, nanoelectronics, molecular nanostructures, nanobiology, and nano energies.
Foresight Institute Founded in 1986, the Foresight Institute is a nonprofit educational organization and think tank in Menlo Park, Calif. The society's mission is to educate the public on the benefits and risks of nanotechnology. The work of the organization focuses on clean energy and water, health and longevity, environmental health, information technology, and space development. The resource section provides links to web resources for researchers and investors.
Institute of Nano Technology (IoN) The Institute of Nano Technology is a nonprofit educational organization focused on the development and promotion of nanotechnology for the benefit of society. IoN activities include examining the implications of nanotechnology for industry, society, and the environment. The institute, located in Scotland, was founded in 1997. The site has freely available information and resources in addition to market reports for a fee.
Micro and Nanotechnologies Innovation Campus (MINATEC) The Micro and Nanotechnologies Innovation Campus is a technology center in Grenoble, France. MINATEC research areas include materials and integration processing, photonics, microelectromechanical systems and sensors, molecular electronics, nanocharacterization, nanoelectronics, and spintronics. The government-funded research center was founded in 2002.
Nano and Advanced Materials Institute (NAMI)
The Nano and Advanced Materials Institute was established to promote nanotechnology research and development for the Hong Kong region. Research areas include nanomaterials, nano optoelectronics, and nanostructured material. The institute is hosted by the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in Kowloon.
Nano Science and Technology Institute (NSTI) Founded in 1997, the Nano Science and Technology Institute is an education and business center in Cambridge, Mass. The work of the institute focuses on the integration of nanotechnology through educational programs, publications, and research services. NSTI produces the annual conference Nanotech.
Nanotechnology Institute (NTI) The Nanotechnology Institute is an academic/Pennsylvania state government partnership located in Philadelphia. The institute's primary focus is on technology transfer from academia to industry, with the ultimate goal of commercial application of new nanotechnology discoveries. NTI was created by the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University.
Nanotechnology Research and Education Centers The National Nanotechnology Initiative (see U.S. Government section) posts a list of U.S. government and academic research centers involved in nanotechnology research and education.

Communities, Forums, and Networks

Numerous online networking sites are dedicated to nanotechnology professionals and researchers. These sites offer the opportunity to connect with information and people in nanoscience.

Nanoforum - European Nanotechnology Gateway  Nanoforum, originally funded by the European Commission, operates as a news distribution forum. The news is divided into topics, including Chemistry & Materials, Health & Nanobio, Nanotools & Metrology, and Transport & Space, among others. Individuals can join the Nanoforum community for free to participate in discussion groups and disseminate information. The mission of the forum is to "enhance access" to nanotechnology activities in Europe.
NanoHub NanoHub was created to support research and educational initiatives in nanotechnology. The site features more than 1,600 educational resources, including online presentations, undergraduate and graduate courses, learning modules, conceptual learning tools, and more. NanoHub was created by the Network for Computational Nanotechnology (see below) with National Science Foundation (NSF) funding.
NanoInfoline Developed by graduate students, NanoInfoline is an open access portal for nanotechnology research. The site is divided into four sections: Research Papers, Professors, Community, and Forum. Citations are provided for papers from high-impact journals such as Advanced Materials, Nature, Science, ACS Nano, and Journal of American Chemical Society, among others. Individuals join as members (for free) to participate in online discussions.
National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network (NNIN) Supported by NSF, the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network is a partnership of 14 university-based user facilities that support nanotechnology research. The network offers access to high-tech tools and facilities for researchers. NNIN services are open to industry and government users. NNIN members also provide training and advice on how to start a research project. NNIN hosts workshops, seminars, and conferences.
Nature Network  Nature Network is a professional networking site created by Nature Publishing Group. The purpose of the site is to create "an online meeting place" for scientists. Members can join interest groups, participate in forum discussions, and post blog commentaries. There are nearly 20 forums dedicated to nanotechnology, with many other forums in related areas.
Nanopaprika  Nanopaprika, also known as The Internet NanoScience Community (TINC), is an "online social networking community for nanoscientists" created by a Hungarian doctoral student. Members can form thematic groups and chat with colleagues. The site also features several blogs written by members.
NanoScienceWorks NanoScienceWorks is a nonprofit online research community for nanotechnology supported by the Taylor & Francis Group, a publishing company. The site presents general news stories, nano "newsmakers" features, and brief institutional profiles. It also spotlights information about Taylor & Francis publications related to nanotechnology.

Criticism and Risks

Criticism of nanotechnology includes ethical issues, potential risks, and possible disasters that range from significant disruption of national economies to the complete destruction of our planet. In addition to the three sites below, many of the other sites listed in this webliography include information about societal and ethical issues.

Center for Responsible Nanotechnology (CRN) The Center for Responsible Nanotechnology's mission is to examine the benefits and risks of nanotechnology -- specifically molecular manufacturing. CRN is a nonprofit, independent think tank, which claims "no direct affiliation to any government, business, or academic organization."
International Council on Nanotechnology (ICON) The mission of the International Council on Nanotechnology is to promote the safe development of nanotechnology to minimize risk and maximize benefits. The organization works with stakeholders from government, academia, industry, and private organizations. ICON activities include hosting forums, developing an electronic knowledge base, providing high-quality technical information, and fostering communication between stakeholders. ICON is managed by Rice University's Center for Biological and Environmental Nanotechnology.
Societal and Ethical Issues in Nanotechnology (SEI) In association with the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network (see Communities, Forums & Networks section), SEI members focus on research about societal and ethical issues surrounding nanotechnology. The site includes a resource database searchable by type of material (e.g., article, book, multimedia, etc.) or by category (e.g., environmental, green nano, regulation, etc.). The site also has a brief historical timeline of nanoscience.

Dictionaries and Directories -- The A to Z of Nanotechnology
AZoNano lists freely accessible information and resources on nanotechnology. The site's primary audience is consumers of nanotechnology. Resources include articles, books, events, jobs, news, podcasts, products, and videos. features its own iPhone app. - Dictionary of Nanotechnology is a searchable online dictionary of nanotechnology terms. It also provides a list of abbreviations and extensive listings of nano-related web sites.

DMOZ Open Directory Project -- Science: Technology: Nanotechnology 
  This open web directory lists nearly 300 nanotechnology sites with brief annotations for each listing. It is organized by the following categories: Academic Departments, Conferences, Funding, Materials, People, Personal Pages, Publications, and Research Groups and Centers.

Blogs, Magazines, and News Portals

There are numerous blogs and news and magazine sites that discuss and feature nanotechnology news -- below is a selection. The news portals listed bring together information from a variety of online sources.


New Scientist  The nanotechnology section of this subscription-based magazine features a beginner's guide to nanotechnology and a selection of freely available news articles. The section also provides previews for articles accessible only through a subscription to the magazine.
Scientific American Scientific American's nanotechnology section includes freely available news articles, podcasts, blogs, and slide shows. The section also provides previews for articles accessible only through a subscription to the magazine.

News Portals

Nanotechnology for Development   The Nanotechnology for Development group web page, part of the Zunia Knowledge Exchange (Zunia) web site, consolidates current nanotechnology news by topic from various sources, including news portals, governmental web sites, and publishers. Zunia is an informational platform created by Development Gateway, whose mission is to reduce poverty, and is supported by international groups (including the United Nations), nonprofit organizations, and national governments.
Nanotechnology Now  Nanotechnology Now is an information gateway site featuring news briefs, white papers, feature columns, company and academic directories, interviews with industry leaders, and a career center. Nanotechnology Now also offers subscription- and fee-based products, including consulting services and a specialized monthly report.
Nanowerk Nanowerk is a specialized news portal focusing on nanotechnology information, including new research, recent publications, company profiles, job listings, and event news. The daily "Nanowerk Spotlight" feature article examines recent research findings. This popular site also has a unique database of nanomaterial suppliers.
Physorg - Nanotechnology News Physorg is an online news service for the sciences. The site collects news from government, academic, and industry sources. The nanotechnology section is divided into four sections: Nanotechnology (general news), Bio & Medicine, Nanophysics, and Nanomaterials. The site also publishes exclusive feature stories on new developments in science and technology.

Nanotechnology Blogs ( provides a listing of active blogs focusing on nanotechnology. Each listing has a brief annotation about the blog.


Patents are a crucial part of the research and development of nanotechnology applications. Patent research can be a complex and difficult task. The resources below assist with finding nanotechnology-related patents.

Class 977 Nanotechnology Cross-Reference Art Collection The United States Patent and Trademark Office created a nanotechnology-related reference document to assist with the patent searches for this research area. There are more than 250 cross-reference art collection subclasses for nanotechnology.
Key Patent Strategies for Nanotechnology Inventors (Nanowerk)  Posted in 2008, this article provides nine "considerations" about bionanotechnology patents. The strategies given in the article are meant as a guide to protect new inventions. There are also several links to earlier articles concerning intellectual property rights as they apply to nanoscience.
Nano Patents and Innovations Blog This blog is dedicated to news about nanotechnology patents, markets, and products. It is produced by a private research company, Innovative Research and Products.

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