Current status of nanotechnology consumer products and nano-safety issues
AbstractThis paper is divided into 2 parts to present a review on nanotechnology consumer products (â€˜Nanotechâ€™ products) and a current status on â€˜Nano-Safetyâ€™ issue. The first part focuses on up-to-date information of â€˜Nanotechâ€™ products that were already on the market as reported by Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. There are more than 500 products for a variety of applications, among which health and fitness products are the largest category. The products in this group consist of clothing, cosmetics and sunscreens. Silver is the most commonly used material, followed by carbon in the forms of either nanotubes or fullerenes, and silica, respectively. It is reported that the number of the â€˜Nanotechâ€™ products significantly increased about 124% within the past 14 months. Companies based in the United States share more than 50% of the products while, approximately, a quarter is shared by companies in East Asia. The restare for Europe and other countries as well as Thailand. In the second part, studies concerning Nano-Safety have been evaluated. A preliminary study has been made exclusively to nanoparticles and nanotubes. There are currently over 100,000 scientific journal articles related to nanoparticles or nanotubes. However, it was found that less than 1% of these articles are focusing on the safety of these nanomaterials. In addition, some articles discuss toxicity of various types of materials such as single- or multi-walled carbon nanotubes, copper nanoparticles or silica nanoparticles.
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