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Current Project

Inorganic Chemistry Division (II)
Physical and Biophysical Chemistry Division (I)

Number: 2007-040-2-200

Title: Analysis of the usage of nanoscience and technology in chemistry

Task Group
Javier Garcia Martinez and Sanjay Mathur

Members: Paul O' Brien, Herbert D. Kaesz, Willie J.G.M. Peijnenburg, Jeremy Ramsden, Alan Smith, Martin Meyer, Gonzalo Abellán, and Noemi Linares

To map and critically study the use of the prefix nano in various fields of chemistry. For this purpose, we will use the different search engines available on the web to compare the usage of nano-containing terms. We will map the evolution and usage of nano-containing descriptive terms according to different criteria, and critically analyze their validity in scientific (chemical) language. This project is the first step towards recommendations on the use of chemistry terminology related to nanoscience and nanotechnology.

The last few years have observed a wide proliferation of the terminology related to nanotechnology and nanoscience in chemistry. Today, all high impact chemistry journals contain a large number of papers devoted to this growing area, as many conferences include specific sessions on nanotechnology.

The scope of this project is to study the use of "nano-" terminology in chemistry, analyzing its evolution with time, by country, and its penetration among various chemical disciplines. The aim of this project is not to make any formal definition or recommendation of the use of "nano-" in chemistry, but first to determine what is the current situation regarding the use of "nano-" in chemistry terminology through a detailed analysis of peer-reviewed papers, patents, and books. This project will deliver a guideline for IUPAC to assess the use of "nano-" in chemistry as a first step in proposing recommendations and suggested terminology.

The methodology proposed is the following. First, we will use widely available and popular chemistry search engines, such as Sci Finder, and others provided by the CAS and RSC. The hits on "nano*" will be analyzed according to criteria, such as time, country, and source. Secondly, we will repeat the process by restricting the search to some of the most highly cited journals of each chemistry discipline, to learn if "nano-" terminology has impacted all the areas of chemistry and if so, to what extent and at what rate.



Last update: 15 February 2008

<project announcement published in Chem. Int. 30(3) 2008>

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Page last modified 30 September 2008.
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