Emerging nanotechnol-ogies have the potential to influence and change our lives in ways we could not have imagined as recently as a decade ago. A generic term for applications at the molecular level, nanotechnology will eventually influence every aspect of our lives; from the way we communicate to the methods used to diagnose and treat illness. Nanotechnology will improve efficiencies in energy, computer storage capacity and data processing, security, clothing, food, and shelter.The potential of nanotechnology is reflected by the amount of revenue currently projected for these technologies, between $1 trillion and $2 trillion within the next 10 to 15 years. And just in time, because according to World Resources 2000 and United Nations press releases, within the next 50 years-less than one lifetime-the world population is expected to grow by 50%, world economic activity is expected to grow 500% and world energy and materials use is expected to grow by 300%.

The global ramifications of these projected numbers are staggering, and the development of new ways to respond to these burgeoning demands is critical.

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