Science at the Atomic Scale
Nanoscience is the science of the extremely small. How small? A nanometer is a millionth of a millimeter – about the size of some big single molecules such as the protein enzymes in our bodies. For perspective, a red blood cell is about six thousand nanometers across and a human hair is typically 20,000-100,000 nanometers.
So nanoscience is indeed science at extremely small scales. But why is this important? The incredible advances in computer power come largely from making the transistors of microelectronic circuits ever smaller. In medicine, advances at the nanoscale let us make interventions at the natural size scale of living cells themselves. Ultimately, mastering how to build things at the scale of atoms and molecules may allow us to start mimicking some of the clever things that nature achieves with her own “natural nanotechnology,” which may lead to finding better and cheaper ways of harvesting sunlight for energy, or detecting and eliminating pollutants in water and air.
The Kavli Prize in Nanoscience
The Kavli Prize in Nanoscience is awarded for outstanding achievement in the science and application of the unique physical, chemical and biological properties of atomic, molecular, macromolecular, and cellular structures and systems that are manifest in the nanometer scale, including molecular self-assembly, nanomaterials, nanoscale instrumentation, nanobiotechnology, macromolecular synthesis, molecular mechanics and related topics.
Ondrej L. Krivanek
For sub-ångström resolution imaging and chemical analysis using electron beams.
Jennifer A. Doudna
For the invention of CRISPR-Cas9, a precise nanotool for editing DNA, causing a revolution in biology, agriculture, and medicine.
For the invention and realization of atomic force microscopy, a breakthrough in measurement technology and nanosculpting that continues to have a transformative impact on nanoscience and technology.
Thomas W. Ebbesen
Stefan W. Hell
Sir John B. Pendry
For their transformative contributions to the field of nano-optics that have broken long-held beliefs about the limitations of the resolution limits.
Mildred S. Dresselhaus
For her pioneering contributions to the study of phonons, electron-phonon interactions, and thermal transport in nanostructures.
Donald M. Eigler
Nadrian C. Seeman
For their development of unprecedented methods to control matter on the nanoscale.
Science is a Wonderful Career
As told by Jennifer A. Doudna
Random Encounters Sometimes Push You in the Right Directions
As told by Ondrej L. Krivanek
A Lifetime Passion for Physics
As told by Knut Urban
The Value of Cooperation
As told by Maximilian Haider
Understanding the Basic Nature of the Electron
As told by Harald Rose
The Rapid Rise of CRISPR
A Conversation with Jennifer Doudna, Emmanuelle Charpentier and Virginijus Šikšnys