The Project on Emerging
Nanotechnologies at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars today
launched The Nanotechnology Consumer Products Inventory. This is the first and
only publicly accessible online inventory of nanotechnology consumer products.
The inventory currently contains information on 212 manufacturer-identified
nano products. This far exceeds the existing federal government-accepted
estimate of approximately 80 consumer products. The inventory can be accessed
at no cost online at http://www.nanotechproject.org/consumerproducts.
The inventory furthers the Project on Emerging Nanotechnology's mission to
encourage discussion about nanotechnology's benefits and its promise, as well
as its safety and environmental impacts. Currently, the searchable database
catalogs consumer products using nanotechnology or containing nano materials -
- from sunscreens to refrigerators and cultured diamonds. While not complete,
it is the most comprehensive repository of nanotechnology consumer products
available to the public, policymakers, and industry.
"We are at the vanguard of discovering the endless benefits of
nanotechnology for applications like targeted cancer treatments and more
efficient solar cells. With this inventory, we also are learning that this
technology is already being incorporated into our daily lives. It's on store
shelves and being sold in every part of the world," said David Rejeski,
director of the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies, which is supported by
The Pew Charitable Trusts.
Until now, there was no known broad list of specific products using or
containing nanotechnology that was readily accessible to consumers, retailers,
researchers, and the media. The U.S. government relies on data compiled by
EmTech Research regarding how nanotechnology is marketed and used
commercially. The Project's inventory was developed in response to consumer
interest in nanotechnology and its commercial uses. It provides the public
with a first look at the vast array of acknowledged products companies are
currently making available to shoppers.
Beginning in 2005, the Project began compiling products and materials
containing nanotechnology from around the globe for inclusion in the consumer
inventory. Entry to the list is based primarily on online, English language
information provided by the product manufacturers. It does not include
nanotechnology consumer products which companies have not identified as such.
With these caveats, notable findings from the data in the inventory
- Health and fitness is the most robust category in the inventory, with
125 products to-date, everything from face creams to hockey sticks.
Electronics and computers make up the second largest category with 30
products, followed by the home and garden category;
- Within the health and fitness category, clothing -- such as stain-
resistant shirts, pants and neckties -- constitutes the largest sub-
category with 34 products, followed closely by sporting goods (33
products) and cosmetics (31 products);
- The U.S. is the overwhelming leader in consumer nanotechnology product
development with 126; East Asia and Europe follow with 42 and 35 nano
products respectively; and
- Nanoengineered carbon is the most common material used in the nano
products included within the inventory, followed by silver and silica.
"Nanotechnology's potential is vast and it's real. The opportunity for
nanotechnology ranges from improving Olympic sports equipment to discovering
better treatments for Alzheimer's disease," said Andrew Maynard, science
advisor of the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies. "But our ability to reap
the long-term benefits of nanotechnology -- in areas from energy production to
medicine -- will depend on how well industry and government manage the safety
and performance of this first generation of products."
Nanotechnology is the ability to measure, see, manipulate and manufacture
things usually between 1 and 100 nanometers. A nanometer is one billionth of a
meter; a human hair is roughly 100,000 nanometers wide.
The National Science Foundation predicts that the global marketplace for
goods and services using nanotechnologies will grow to $1 trillion by 2015.
The U.S. invests approximately $3 billion annually in nanotechnology research
and development, which accounts for approximately one-third of the total
public and private sector investments worldwide.
Every item contained in the inventory is manufacturer-identified. Any
statements, claims and views expressed by a manufacturer or third-party
contained in this inventory are solely those of the party making the statement
Product details include: the product name, company/manufacturer or
supplier information, country of origin, and category or subcategory, as well
as a product photograph and description, hyperlink to the product website and
the date that the product was added to the index.
Products are grouped according to categories based loosely on publicly
available consumer product classification systems, which include health and
fitness, electronics and computers, home and garden, food and beverage,
automotive, appliances and children's goods. The inventory also uses sub-
categories. For example, paint is a sub-category labeled under the home and
garden main category.
The inventory will be updated regularly as new information is available.
Users are encouraged to submit new product information for consideration to
Special Launch Event and Webcast
The Center will formally release the Nanotechnology Consumer Products
Inventory at a special launch event today from 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. EST at the
Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, located at 1300 Pennsylvania
Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C., 5th floor conference room.
The event will be webcast live at http://www.wilsoncenter.org/nano.
High resolution photos of products in the nanotechnology consumer products
inventory are available to the media at ftp://wwicsftp.wilsoncenter.org
Username: WWICSFtp Password: p+F$c1WW. Questions regarding photos should be
directed to Alex Parlini: firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 691-4282.
The Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies is an initiative launched by the
Wilson Center and The Pew Charitable Trusts in 2005. It is dedicated to
helping business, government and the public anticipate and manage possible
health and environmental implications of nanotechnology. For more information
about the project, log on to http://www.nanotechproject.org.