The National Nanotechnology Initiative: Overview, Reauthorization, and Appropriations Issues
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS WASHINGTON DC CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE
Pagination or Media Count:
Nanotechnology-a term encompassing the science, engineering, and applications of submicron materials-involves the harnessing of unique physical, chemical, and biological properties of nanoscale substances in fundamentally new and useful ways. The economic and societal promise of nanotechnology has led to substantial and sustained investments by governments and companies around the world. In 2000, the United States launched the worlds first national nanotechnology program. From FY2001 through FY2010, the federal government invested approximately 12.6 billion in nanoscale science, engineering, and technology through the U.S. National Nanotechnology Initiative NNI. President Obama requested 1.8 billion in NNI funding for FY2011, a level generally supported by the current continuing resolution P.L. 112-6, and has requested 2.1 billion in funding for FY2012. U.S. companies and state governments have invested billions more. As a result of this focus and these investments, the United States has, in the view of many experts, emerged as a global leader in nanotechnology. However, the competition for global leadership in nanotechnology is intensifying as countries and companies around the world increase their investments. Nanotechnologys complexity and intricacies, early stage of development with commercial payoff possibly years away for many potential applications, and broad scope of potential applications engender a wide range of public policy issues. Maintaining U.S. technological and commercial leadership in nanotechnology poses a variety of technical and policy challenges, including development of technologies that will enable commercial scale manufacturing of nanotechnology materials and products environmental, health, and safety EHS concerns and maintenance of public confidence in its safety.
- Electrical and Electronic Equipment