Green Nanotechnology: Solutions for Sustainability and Energy in the Built Environment, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Green Nanotechnology

Solutions for Sustainability and Energy in the Built Environment, 1st Edition

By Geoffrey B. Smith, Claes-Goran S. Granqvist

CRC Press

472 pages | 230 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781420085327
pub: 2010-09-29
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A first step in developing a clean and sustainable future is to think differently about everyday products, in particular how they influence energy use. Green Nanotechnology: Solutions for Sustainability and Energy in the Built Environment explores the science and technology of tiny structures that have a huge potential to improve quality of life while simultaneously achieving reductions in the use of fossil fuels. This book examines energy flows in nature and how the optical properties of materials can be designed to harmonize with those flows. It then discusses the properties that can be achieved in real materials to take advantage of nature’s energy flows.

The authors cohesively examine a number of topics, highlighting their applications and the significance of their nano features. They provide a cursory discussion of well-reviewed subjects such as nanostructured solar cells and turn their attention to timely topics such as methods for preventing excessive temperature and approaches to passive cooling. The book identifies key materials and elucidates how their properties can be understood in terms of contemporary materials physics and chemistry. It concludes with a detailed description of a scenario for future buildings that use much less energy while also providing better comfort.

A valuable side effect of most nanotechnologies is that they inherently put us in closer touch with the natural world. With broad coverage of how nanoparticles impact energy use in the built environment, this book opens readers’ eyes to a fascinating vision of how technology and nanoscience can merge and lead to commodity-scale products that help preserve our planet.


Both Smith and Granqvist, the two authors of the book, are eminent optical scientists with a longstanding fondness for the visible and infrared properties of particulate composite materials. … All technoscientists, not only physicists and materials researchers, would do well to read the list of 17 characteristics that the Smith–Granqvist vision possesses. These characteristics delineate a blueprint for research directions … . Remarkable features of this book are the bridges built throughout the volume with contemporary research topics through call-out boxes. … The book is profusely illustrated, mostly in black and white but also with 10 pages of multicolored illustrations. Occasional flashes of quiet humor grace the book … . Another remarkable feature of this book is its price. …Other academic publishers should take note. …

—Akhlesh Lakhtakia, Pennsylvania State University, Journal of Nanophotonics, Vol. 5, 2011

Table of Contents

Green Nanotechnology: Introduction and Invitation

What Is Nanotechnology?

What Is Green Nanotechnology?

Some Basic Issues in Nanoscience

Nanoscience, Dimensionality, and Thin Films

Outdoing Nature in Exploiting Complexity

Energy Supply and Demand

Energy and Development


In Harmony with the Environment: Nature’s Energy Flows and Desired Materials Properties

Global Energy Flows

Radiation in Our Ambience: An Overview

Interaction Between Radiation and Materials

Beam and Diffuse Radiation

Hemispherical Absorptance

Solar and Daylighting Performance Parameters

Thermal Radiation and Spectral Properties of the Atmosphere

Dynamical Environmental Properties

Materials for Optimized Use of the Spectral, Directional, and Dynamical Properties of Solar Energy and Sky Radiation

Thermal and Density Gradients in the Atmosphere and Oceans

Performance of Energy Systems: Thermodynamics and Value


Optical Materials Science for Green Nanotechnology: The Basics

Light and Nanostructures

Spectral Properties of Uniform Materials

Plasmonic Materials in General

Materials for Electron-Based Plasmonics: Mirrors for Visible and Infrared Light

Ionic-Based Materials with Narrow-Band Infrared Properties

Generic Classes of Spectrally Selective Materials

Thin Films for Controlling Spectral Properties and Local Light Intensities

Nanoparticle Optics

Optical Homogenization of Nanocomposites

Surface Plasmon Resonances in Films, Particles, and “Rectennas”

Temporary “Storage” of Light at Resonances and in Evanescent Fields


Visual Indoors–Outdoors Contact and Daylighting: Windows

General Introduction

Spectral Selectivity: The Potential in Energy Efficiency

Spectral Selectivity of Noble-Metal-Based Films

Spectral Selectivity of Oxide-Semiconductor-Based Films

Spectral Selectivity: Novel Developments for Films and Foils

Optimized Angular Properties: The Energy Efficiency That Is Possible

Angular Selectivity of Films with Inclined Columnar Nanostructures

Chromogenics: The Energy Efficiency That Is Possible





Electric Lighting and Daylighting: Luminaires

Lighting: Past, Present, and Future

Daylighting Technology: The “Cool” Option

Dielectric Mirrors Based on Nanostructure

Luminescent Solar Concentrators for Daylighting and Solar Power

Light Diffusing Transmitting Materials

Advanced Electronic Lighting Concepts


Heat and Electricity: Solar Collectors and Solar Cells

Solar Thermal Materials and Devices

Photovoltaic Materials and Devices


Coolness: High-Albedo Surfaces and Sky Cooling Devices

Two Cooling Strategies

City Heating, Global Cooling, and Summer Blackouts

High-Albedo Paints for Cool Buildings

Sky Cooling to Subambient Temperatures

Water Condensation Using Sky Cooling

A Role for Cooling and Waste Heat in Electric Power Generation

Electronic Cooling and Nanotechnology

Whither Cooling?


Supporting Nanotechnologies: Air Sensing and Cleaning, Thermal Insulation and Electrical Storage

Air Quality and Air Sensing

Photocatalysis for Cleaning

Thermal Insulation with Nanomaterials

Green Energy Storage


Conclusions: Nanotechnologies for a Sustainable Future

Energy and the Future

New Technologies and Growing Uptake of Proven Technologies

Towards a “Nanoworld”


Appendix 1: Thin Film Deposition

Appendix 2: Abbreviations, Acronyms, and Symbols


Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SCIENCE / Physics
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Power Resources / Alternative & Renewable