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Introductory Level Nanotechnology Modules

These introductory level modules are a series of thought-provoking nanotechnology presentations filled with in-depth material for students and workers of all knowledge levels.  These free modules are designed to be used in workshops, courses, and overview lectures to introduce nanotechnology and its applications.

The NACK Center is committed to supporting the development of two-year degree programs in micro- and nanotechnology across the country by offering teaching resources suitable for the post-secondary level.  Read more.

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Throughout these modules, you will find words and terms printed in the color blue.  These words and terms are defined in the Nano Modules Glossary, which can be viewed by clicking here.

Quantum DotModule 1: Nanotechnology: What Is It, and Why Is It So "BIG" Now?
Description: This module gives an overview of nanotechnology, what the word "nanotechnology" means, and where it comes from. It also explores the differences between the macro-scale, micro-scale, and nano-scale. This module explores how old nanotechnology is with a brief history and concludes with why nanotechnology is so popular today.

Mini Cooper Movie

carbon nanotube

Module 2: A Brief History of Nanotechnology
Description: This module explores the history of nanotechnology: from Romans using gold and silver nanoparticles in their glasswork 2,000 years ago to modern day where nanoparticles are being used in cancer treatments.

Drug particleModule 3: A Snapshot of Nanotechnology Today
Description: This module gives a snapshot of nanotechnology today including the worldwide investment in nanotechnology, workforce demands, and some examples of nanotechnology being used to enhance consumer products.

ButterflyModule 4: The Uniqueness of the Nano-scale
Description: This module covers the unique attributes of the nano-scale and some examples of these unique attributes, including small size, high surface to volume ratio, surface forces in relation to bulk forces, quantum mechanical effects, and wave properties of light.

Quantum CorralModule 5: How Do We "See" Things at the Nano-scale: An Introduction to Characterization Techniques
Description: This module provides an introduction to characterization techniques including transmission electron microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, x-ray spectroscopy, scanning probe microscopy tools, and quantum mechanical tunneling. 

DI Tapping
SEM Operation

Bottom Up
Module 6: How Do You Make Things So Small: An Introduction to Nanofabrication
Description: This module provides an introduction to nanofabrication including what is made through nanofabrication, now nanofabrication is directed, and the various processes involved in nanofabrication: top-down, bottom-up, and hybrid.

Dry etching
Module 7: How Do You Build Things So Small: Top-Down Nanofabrication
Description: This module gives an in-depth exploration of the process of top-down nanofabrication including the basic steps: deposition, pattern transfer, etching, and materials modification.

Module 8: How Do You Build Things So Small: Bottom-Up Nanofabrication
Description: This module gives an in-depth exploration of the process of bottom-up nanofabrication including the basic steps: building-block fabrication and self-assembly.

Module 9: Nanotechnology, Biology, and Medicine
Description: This module provides various examples of the impact of nanotechnology on biology and medicine. Biology topics include intra-cellular machinery and cancer cell structure. Medicine topics include disease intervention, drug delivery, and disease detection.

Andy Kessler - Nanotechnology and the "End of Medicine"
Cancer cells labeled with red-emitting Quantum Dots
Kineasine Molecules labeled using Quantum Dots 
Hela Cancer cells and Human Growth Peptide EGF
National Cancer Institute

Grow and Place
Module 10: Nanotechnology: Impact on Microelectronics
Description: This module explores the impact of nanotechnology on the field of microelectronics, the latest innovations, alternatives to nano-scale microelectronics, nanoelectronics, and moltronics.

To see the complete list of resources that the NACK Center offers, visit: