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Anton Joseph Lucanus

The revolutionary era of nanoscience

It is common knowledge that technologies have broadened the scope of human possibility for years. Electricity itself lit up an era, and introduced an entirely new (and eventually depended on) spectrum of possibility. The invention of the internet revolutionised not only education, but retail and research, as well as introducing the concepts of ecommerce and digital marketing. While these inventions undoubtably revolutionised their eras and changed the world beyond the point of return, a new science may even rival the impact of such inventions. Nanoscience has introduced the ability to control matter at the nanoscale – for emphasis, a nanometre is approximately the equivalent to one billionth of a metre. Nanoscience has brought with its fruition the ability to see, pinpoint, and control individual molecules and atoms, allowing science to make leaps and bounds in the evolution of material and data manipulation. While the intricacies of nanoscience are still being discovered, the feats that the technology has already accomplished speak volumes of its potential for further evolution, and its longevity. It is no secret that the entire planet is continuously becoming more dependent on technological advancement, and nanoscience is just one of three emerging technologies that are set to surge upward in the coming years, nanotechnology presents a world of opportunities both professionally for some, and generally for all.

The emerging revolutionary era of nanoscience is already deemed by many in the field to be more significant than any prior era driven by a sole material (for example…the stone era, or the iron era).  Careers specialising in nanoscience are only going to become more highly coveted as time goes on, and individuals interested in pursuing careers in nanoscience or similar fields have various tools at their disposal should they wish to take up a career in the sciences industries, such as open days and career fairs for those that are new to the field, or webpages to allow more experienced individuals to make postgraduate course comparison choices before landing decisively on a university. Careers in tech-driven industries have continued to prove to be in high demand, and as nanoscience continues to evolve and expand, it only makes perfect sense that individuals that work in nanoscience as their professional field of choice are going to be more in demand as the interest and necessity of the technology grows.

Like practically every field of science to come before it, nanoscience poses some potential issues – but, as with every field of science to come before it, nanoscience requires human interference to drive it (for now). While some are concerned about the potential impact that nanoscience may have on future generations, most are regarding the field realistically. Most individuals understand that while it will progress and face trials and errors, it is also a field that – if the planet continues in its digitized era – will become not only dependable, but necessary to everyday life. Like electricity, nanoscience has the potential to profoundly impact humanity infinitely and, in turn, the world. More and more individuals are finding themselves wanting to be a part of driving a revolution, of building something phenomenal and life changing – nanoscience is the epitome of this very concept, and so the interest in nanoscience has resulted in increased interest in careers that are founded under this umbrella.

It is true that there has been some ethical reservations about using nanoscience to enhance and expand on human movement – a science that allows the literal manipulation of physical material and data could, after all, develop beyond human reach. Much like the concern surrounding AI development, however, the reservations surrounding nanoscience are unnecessary, as the technology has not reached peaks anywhere near high enough to be of concern just yet. Just as robots will not be turning against humanity any time soon, nanoscience will not produce material that can literally jump out from a television screen in the foreseeable future. While there is still a long way to go before the implementation of nanotechnology can become widespread, the revolutions that the science has already brought to life are changing the intricacies of things even now, when the development and evolution of the science is relatively new. One strong example of this is how nanoscience is introducing a varying array of previously-undiscovered physical materials – quantum dots, for example, are used to revolutionise electronic devices, from laptop functionality to the sharper, more financially efficient television screens.

Nanoscience shows no signs of slowing down, as the impact of this new technology has been compared to past revolutions such as the invention of electricity, the invention of motor vehicles (land, sky, and sea), and the invention of plastic. Nanotechnology’s ability to thrive at the molecular level drastically – and definitively – shifts humanity’s ability to utilise and maintain materials of all kinds. Engineers and scientists alike are literally trained to find solutions for things that seem impossible (or, at the very least, improbable), and the field of nanoscience is no different in this way. While its potential holds a lot of individualistic sentiments, the logic behind the science remains the same. The scientists and engineers that will learn to become the thinkers at the forefront of the field will also be responsible for the translation of knowledge into manufactured and utilised devices.

Nanoscience allows the opportunity to drive, evolve, and manipulate physical material, and the potential for future innovation is one that, so far as current developments can tell, is limitless. From something as (seemingly) simple as enhancing the picture on a television screen, to encrypting data to enhance AI technology, nanoscience and the technologies that it houses are not only capable of introducing the concepts behind innovations beyond current realisation, but producing and perfecting them. The era of nanoscience has well and truly arrived, and there has never been a more opportune time to develop a career bound to the science and technology at its core.

Anton Lucanus is breast cancer researcher at UWA who is interested in the emerging applications of nano-fabrication in cancer biology. If you would like to contact Anton, you can do so via clicking this This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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