New textbook introduces students to the foundations, applications of nanotechnology

Blacksburg, Va. -- Scientists and engineers worldwide are taking control of matter at its smallest scale, individual atoms, to create new materials and devices that are making electronics smaller and promise a future with highly efficient flexible solar cells and molecular machinery to augment human systems.

This new field of science, called nanotechnology, has unfolded so quickly that the recent university courses in nanotechnology have had to depend upon compendiums of journal articles as their textbooks or books geared to majors in a specific field.

Now, however, three scientists have pulled together some 60 active researchers across many disciplines to write a broad-based textbook specifically for students. Introduction to Nanoscale Science and Technology, has just been released by Kluwer Academic Publishers (www.wkap.nl/prod/b/1-4020-7720-3). The book was created by James R. Heflin Jr. of the Virginia Tech Department of Physics, Stephane Evoy of the University of Pennsylvania Department of Electrical and Systems Engineering, and Massimiliano Di Ventra of the University of California at San Diego Department of Physics.

Heflin and Evoy created and co-taught a nanotechnology course for seniors and first-year graduate students at Virginia Tech in spring 2001. When Evoy went to the University of Pennsylvania that summer, he introduced the course there. Kluwer saw the course on the Virginia Tech website and approached Heflin in September 2001 about writing a textbook.

"When I said, 'No way do I have the time to write a comprehensive textbook, they suggested I could form a team and invite contributors, so that's what I did," Heflin said. He invited Di Ventra, who was at Virginia Tech at the time, and Evoy to be co-editors.

"We did an outline of topics, then looked for people to write the various chapters," said Heflin. "The authors range from high-profile senior people to yo

Contact: Susan Trulove
Virginia Tech

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