Nanotechnology : Understanding Small Systems, Third Edition book cover
3rd Edition

Understanding Small Systems, Third Edition

ISBN 9781138072688
Published May 11, 2017 by CRC Press
432 Pages 182 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

An Accessible, Scientifically Rigorous Presentation That Helps Your Students Learn the Real Stuff

Winner of a CHOICE Outstanding Academic Book Award 2011
"… takes the revolutionary concepts and techniques that have traditionally been fodder for graduate study and makes them accessible for all. … outstanding introduction to the broad field of nanotechnology provides a solid foundation for further study. Highly recommended."
N.M. Fahrenkopf, University at Albany, CHOICE Magazine 2011

Give your students the thorough grounding they need in nanotechnology. A rigorous yet accessible treatment of one of the world’s fastest growing fields, Nanotechnology: Understanding Small Systems, Third Edition provides an accessible introduction without sacrificing rigorous scientific details. This approach makes the subject matter accessible to students from a variety of disciplines. Building on the foundation set by the first two bestselling editions, this third edition maintains the features that made previous editions popular with students and professors alike.

See What’s New in the Third Edition:

  • Updated coverage of the eight main facets of nanotechnology
  • Expanded treatment of health/environmental ramifications of nanomaterials
  • Comparison of macroscale systems to those at the nanoscale, showing how scale phenomena affects behavior
  • New chapter on nanomedicine
  • New problems, examples, and an exhaustive nanotech glossary

Filled with real-world examples and original illustrations, the presentation makes the material fun and engaging. The systems-based approach gives students the tools to create systems with unique functions and characteristics. Fitting neatly between popular science books and high-level treatises, the book works from the ground up to provide a gateway into an exciting and rapidly evolving area of science.

Table of Contents

Big Picture and Principles of the Small World
Understanding the Atom: Ex Nihilo Nihil Fit
Nanotechnology Starts with a Dare: Feynman’s Big Little Challenges
Why One-Billionth of a Meter Is a Big Deal
Thinking It Through: The Broad Implications of Nanotechnology
Gray Goo
Environmental Impact: Risks to Ecosystems and Human Health
The Written Word
The Bus iness of Nanotech: Plenty of Room at the Bottom Line Too
Homework Exercises
Recommendations for Further Reading

Introduction to Miniaturization
Background: The Smaller, the Better
Scaling Laws
The Elephant and the Flea
Scaling in Mechanics
Scaling in Electricity and Electromagnetism
Scaling in Optics
Scaling in Heat Transfer
Scaling in Fluids
Scaling in Biology
Accuracy of the Scaling Laws
Homework Exercises
Recommendations for further reading

Introduction to Nanoscale Physics
Background: Newton Never Saw a Nanotub e
One Hu ndred Hours and Eight Minutes of Nanoscale Physics
The Basics of Quantum Mechanics
Atomic Orbitals (Not Orbits)
EM Waves
How EM Waves Are Made
The Quantization of Energy
Atomic Spectra and Discreteness
The Photoelectric Effect
Wave–Particle Duality: The Double-Slit Experiment
Water Waves
The Uncertainty Principle
Particle in a Well
Homework Exercises

Background: Matter Matters
Bonding Atoms to Make Molecules and Solids
Ionic Bonding
Covalent Bonding
Metallic Bonding
Walking through Waals: van der Waals Forces
Dispersion Force
Repulsive Forces
van der Waals Force versus Gravity
C rystal Structures
Structures Small Enough to Be Diff erent (and Usefu l)
Colloidal Particles
Films, Layers, and Coatings
Porous Materials
Small-Grained Materials
Carbon Fullerenes and Nanotubes
Homework Exercises
Recommendations For Further Reading

Background: The Universe Mechanism
Nanomechanics: Which Motions and Forces Make the Cut?
A High-Speed Review of Motion: Disp lacement, Velocity, Acceleration, and Force
N anomechanical Os cillators: A Tale of Beams and Atoms
Free Oscillation
Free Oscillation from the Perspective of Energy (and Probability)
Forced Oscillation
Lennard-Jones Interaction: How an Atomic Bond Is Like a Spring
Quantum Mechanics of Oscillating Atoms
Schrödinger Equation and Correspondence Principle
Nanomechanical Oscillator Applications
Nanomechanical Memory Elements
Nanomechanical Mass Sensors: Detecting Low Concentrations
Feeling Faint Forces
Scanning Probe Microscopes
Pushing Atoms around with the Scanning Tunneling Microscope

Skimming across Atoms with the Atomic Force Microscope
Pulling Atoms Apart with the AFM
Rubbing and Mashing Atoms with the AFM
Mechanical Chemistry: Detecting Molecules with Bending Beams
Homework Exercises
Recommendations for Further Reading

Background: The Problem (Opp ortunity)
Electron Energy Bands
Electrons in Solids: Conductors, Insu lators, and Semiconductors
Fermi Energy
ensity of States for Solids
Electron Density in a Conductor
Turn Down the Volume! (How to Make a Solid Act More Like an Atom)
Quantum Confinement
Quantum Structures
Uses for Quantum Structures

How Small Is Small Enough for Confinement?
Conductors: The Metal-to-Insulator Transition
Semiconductors: Confining Excitons
Band Gap of Nanomaterials
Electrons Tunnel
s ingle Electron Phenomena
Two Rules for Keeping the Quantum in Quantum Dot
Rule : The Coulomb Blockade

Rule : Overcoming Uncertainty
Single-Electron Transistor
. M olecular Electronics
.Molecular Switches and Memory Storage
. Summary
Homework Exercises

Nanoscale Heat Transfer
Background: Hot Topic
A ll Heat Is Nanoscale Heat
Boltzmann’s Constant
Thermal Conductivity of Nanoscale Structures
Mean Free Path and Scattering of Heat Carriers
Thermoelectrics: Better Energy Conversion with Nanostructures
Quantum of Thermal Conduction
Increased Radiation Heat Transfer: Mind the Gap!
Homework Exercises
Recommendations for Further Reading

Background: The Lycurgus Cup and the Birth of the Photon
Photonic Properties of Nanomaterials
Photon Absorption
Photon Emission
Photon Scattering
Permittivity and the Free Electron Plasma

The Extinction Coefficient of Metal Particles
Colors and Uses of Gold and Silver Particles
Tuning the Band Gap of Nanoscale Semiconductors
The Colors and Uses of Quantum Dots
Lasers Based on Quantum Confinement
N ear-Field Light
The Limits of Light: Conventional Optics
Near-Field Optical Microscopes
Optical Tw eezers
Photonic Crystals: A Band Gap for Photons
Homework excercise
Recommendations for Further Reading

Nanoscale Fluid Mechanics
Background: Becoming Fluent in Fluids
Treating a Fluid the Way It Should Be Treated: The Concept of a Continuum
Fluid Motion, Continuum Style: The Navier–Stokes Equations

Fluid Motion: Molecular Dynamics Style
Fluids at the Nanoscale: Major Concepts
Swimming in Molasses: Life at Low Reynolds Numbers
Reynolds Number

Surface Charges and the Electrical Double Layer
Surface Charges at Interfaces
Gouy–Chapman–Stern Model and Electrical Double Layer
Electrokinetic Phenomena
Small Particles in Small Flows: Molecular Diffusion
How Fluids Flow at the Nanoscale
Pressure-Driven Flow
Gravity-Driven Flow
Superposition of Flows
Ions and Macromolecules Moving through a Channel
Stokes Flow around a Particle

The Convection–Diffusion–Electromigration Equation: Nanochannel Electrophoresis
Macromolecules in a Nanofluidic Channel
Applications of Nanofluidics
Analysis of Biomolecules: An End to Painful Doctor Visits?
Electroosmotic Pumps: Cooling Off Computer Chips
Other Applications
Homework Exercises

Background: Our World in a Cell
I ntroduction: How Biology "Feels" at the Nanometer Scale
Biological Shapes at the Nanoscale: Carbon and Water Are the Essential Tools
Inertia and Gravity Are Insignificant: The Swimming Bacterium
Random Thermal Motion
The Machinery of the Cell
Sugars Are Used for Energy (but also Structure)

Fatty Acids Are Used for Structure (but also Energy)
Nucleotides Are Used to Store Information and Carry Chemical Energy
Deoxyribonucleic Acid

Adenosine Triphosphate
Amino Acids Are Used to Make Proteins
ATP Synthase
Applications of Nanobiotechnology
Biomimetic Nanostructures
Molecular Motors
Homework excercises
Recommendations for Further Reading

What Is Nanomedicine?
Medical Nanoparticles
Lipid-Based Nanoparticles
Polymer-Based Nanoparticles and Polymer Therapeutics
Nanoparticles for Drug Delivery
Nanomedicine and Cancer
Biomimicry in Nanomedicine
Commercial Ex Ploration
Homework Exercises
Recommendations for Further Reading

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Ben Rogers is a writer and an engineer (BS 2001; MS 2002, University of Nevada, Reno). He has done research at Nanogen, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and published many technical papers, as well as fictional works and essays (which can be found at He is currently the principal engineer at NevadaNano and lives in Reno with his wife and two daughters.
Jesse Adams (BS 1996, University of Nevada; MS 1997 and PhD 2001, Stanford University) is the vice president and CTO of NevadaNano. He is working to bring multifunctional microsensor technology to the chemical sensing market space.
Sumita Pennathur is an associate professor of mechanical engineering at the University of California, Santa Barbara (BS 2000, MS 2001, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; PhD 2005, Stanford University). She has been actively contributing to the fields of nanofluidics and nanoelectromechanical systems (NEMS), and has spent some time at both Sandia National Laboratories in Livermore, California, and the University of Twente MESA+ research facility in the Netherlands. When not enveloped in her research work, she can be found either spending time with her husband and two kids or at a local club wailing on her saxophone.


"I use this book for undergrad freshmen and sophomore students. This book is useful to introduce the concept of nanotechnology to undergrad students in their very early stage of study."
—Eui-Hyeok Yang, Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, New Jersey, USA

"The book is well-written with lots of examples and historic perspectives that certainly make reading more enjoyable and stimulating."
—Dr. Prabhu Arumugam, Louisiana Tech University, Ruston, USA

"The main strengths of this book are its illustrations, which are well conceived and layered from the viewpoint of attracting student attention, while also containing a sufficient level of detail to warrant repeated reference. While the "back of the envelope" calculations can come across as rather simplistic, I like it from the viewpoint that it helps students identify a degree of personal connection to the concept. The connection to emerging research ideas and even some example commercial products helps highlight the dynamic coverage of the topics. Through classifying chapters as per the areas of mechanics, fluidics, electronics, biology and medicine, the authors are able to relate their material to core disciplines, while emphasizing unifying and converging ideas."
—Nathan S. Swami, Electrical & Computer Engineering, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, USA

"Overall, this book takes engaging and entertaining style, which makes this book very readable, and provides a gateway into an exciting and rapidly evolving area of science."
—Mei Zhang, Florida State University

"… a comprehensive overview of nearly all aspects of modern and meaningful nano science and technology. … accessible to students with a wide variety of backgrounds, strengths, and disciplines, especially within a full semester course on nano science and technology."
—Michael J. Escuti, North Carolina State University

"… describes the plurality of nanotechnology in a good manner, both from its historical, chemical, physical and biological aspects …"
—Ola Nilsen, University of Oslo, Norway

"… an excellent introduction to a wide range of nanotechnology topics and the authors make the material fun to learn. … The authors are able to strip down difficult topics and present them in an easy to read formula."
—Donald J. Sirbuly, Department of NanoEngineering, UC San Diego