Ask a Scientist: How Do You Manage the Risks Associated With Nanotechnology?

2 minutes

I'm Jamie Wetmore, an associate professor at Arizona State University, but I also lead the Societal and Ethical Implications effort at the NNCI-- the National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure.

The question is are there risks to nanotechnology? There's always risks with every technology. Nano may have some new ones we haven't experienced and don't know how to deal with, but just because something is risky doesn't mean we should be afraid. One of my favorite examples is, we actually use something that is terrifyingly risky almost every day--gasoline. If you put a match to it, it explodes, yet we use it. It's how we get around and power systems. We've developed systems to make sure that it's safe. We train people to use it safely. We design systems so it doesn't explode. Nanotechnology has risks, so we think about it and work on it to manage those risks.


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Nano expert Jameson Wetmore from Arizona State University offers tips for managing the potential risks associated with nanotechnology. Part of the “Ask a Scientist” series.

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Runtime: 2 minutes

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