New multiscale models need to be developed that can predict both yield and performance. Design tools using these multiscale models, equivalent to computer assisted design or finite element analysis, are needed to enable rapid product development.
Tool development. New metrology tools and manufacturing tools are needed to measure and manipulate nanostructures and nanocomponents, with an emphasis on in-line, real-time manufacturing rate capabilities to ensure high yield and precision.
Environmental and occupational health and safety. In order to realize the benefits of nanomanufacturing, it is necessary to better understand the ramifications for workers, users, and the environment of health, safety, and environmental issues related to nanomaterials, nanomanufacturing processes, and nanotechnology-based products and their disposal. Any potential issues or problems should be addressed proactively.
Education and societal impact. The new nanotechnology-based processes will likely continue the manufacturing trend of decreasing physical and increasing information-processing requirements.
An appropriately educated workforce, both for making the next-generation discoveries and for operating the nanomanufacturing processes, is vital to the continued economic success of the country. In addition, educating the general public about nanotechnology and nanomanufacturing is critical to achieving acceptance and realization of the promise of nanotechnology, its capabilities and risks. In , the NNI initiated a program component area PCA in nanomanufacturing, including all means that have the capability to reproducibly transform matter—from a bulk form and from individual atoms, molecules, and supramolecular structures—into nanoscale or nanostructured materials, devices, or systems with desired properties and performance characteristic typically in large quantities.
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