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Nanomanufacturing is the essential bridge between the discoveries of the nano sciences and real-world nanotechnology-enabled products.

  • It is the utilization of value-added processes to control matter at the nanoscale in one, two, and three dimensions for reproducible, commercial-scale production;
  • It encompasses bottom-up directed assembly, top-down high resolution processing, molecular systems engineering, and hierarchical integration with macro-scale systems.

Flexible Electronics
Optical photograph of the high density SWNT structures on parylene-C coated polycarbonate substrate. From Xugang Xiong et al 2009 Nanotechnology 20 295302.
Nanomanufacturing is the controllable manipulation of materials structures, components, devices, and systems at the nanoscale (1 to 100 nanometers) in one, two, and three dimensions for large-scale reproducibility of value-added components and devices.

Nanomanufacturing remains the essential bridge between the discoveries of the nanosciences and real-world nanotechnology products. Advancing nanotechnology from the laboratory into high-volume production ultimately requires careful study of manufacturing system issues including product design, reliability and quality, process design and control, shop floor operations and supply chain management.

Nanomanufacturing encompasses bottom-up directed assembly, top-down high resolution processing, molecular systems engineering, and hierarchical integration with larger scale systems. As dimensional scales of materials and molecular systems approach the nanoscale, the conventional rules governing the behavior and properties of these components, devices, and systems change significantly. As such, the behavior of the final product is enabled by the collective performance of the nanoscale building blocks. 

Nanomanufacturing can be applied in all areas of contemporary manufacturing, including:

There are many consumer products currently on the market that incorporate nanotechnology in some way. The Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies maintains an online inventory of consumer items, including:

  • batteries and appliances
  • mobile devices, cameras, and electronic displays
  • bikes, tennis racquets, and golf clubs
  • antibacterial kitchenware and food storage bags

References and Resources

  • Singer P. 2007.  Nanotechnology: Turning Nanoscience into Nanomanufacturing. Semiconductor International. 30(1): 36.
  • Society of Manufacturing Engineers. What is Nanomanufacturing? Available from
  • Busnaina, Ahmed. 2009. Nanotechnology Enables a Major Manufacturing Paradigm Shift. Small Times Winter Quarterly: 10-17. Available from
  • Biscarini, Fabio, et al. 2002. Nanomanufacturing and Processing—Research, Education, Infrastructure, Security, Resource. Journal of Manufacturing Science and Engineering 124: 489-490.
  • Chryssolouris G, Stavropoulos P, Tsoukantas G, Salonitis K, and Stournaras A. 2004. Nanomanufacturing Processes: a critical review. International Journal of Materials and Product Technology 21(4): 331-348. 
  • Doumanidis H. 2002. The Nanomanufacturing Programme at the National Science Foundation. Nanotechnology 13: 248-252.
  • Lyons, K. 2007. Integration, Interoperability, and Information management: What are the key issues for nanomanufacturing? Proc SPIE. 6648. DOI: 10.1117/12.735615.
  • Postek M and Lyons K. 2007. Instrumentation, metrology and standards: Key elements for the future of nanomanufacturing. Proc SPIE. 6648. DOI: 10.1117/12.730855.
  • Sengul H, Theis TL, and Ghosh S. 2008. Toward Sustainable Nanoproducts: An overview of nanomanufacturing methods. Journal of Industrial Ecology 12(3): 329-359.
  • Busnaina A. 2007. Nanomanufacturing Handbook. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press/Taylor & Francis.
  • Tolfree and Jackson. 2008. Commercializing Micro-Nanotechnology Products. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press/Taylor & Francis.
  • Cui Z. 2008. Nanofabrication: Principles, Capabilities and Limits. Springer.