Nanotechnology Presentation at November Science Cafe

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Nanotechnology is one of the hottest topics in science right now.
Svetlana Kilina, assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry at North Dakota State, has been researching the topic for years.

Kilina, who has been at NDSU since 2010, will give her presentation “Nanomaterials: History, Technological Potentials and Concerns” at 7 p.m. on Tuesday.

The event is part of the November Science Cafe.

“Evidence has shown that nanomaterials have been used for hundreds and thousands of years,” said Kilina. “But now we can control the properties and we want to know the pros and cons.”

Nanotechnology involves the manipulation of materials on an atomic or molecular scale.

Nanomaterials are small and flexible and can easily penetrate through cells. This has potential for medical application, such as cancer therapy. But nanomaterials may also have currently unknown negative bodily effects. More research needs to be conducted.

Kilina also teaches an undergraduate chemistry course at NDSU where she teaches quantum mechanics. The course discusses the idea of a “particle in the box,” which is an abstract model that can be applied to systems in a small size.

It qualitatively explains behavior but is abstract and thus different from the practical world.

Thanks to nanotechnology, scientists will be able to actually work with the small size and not have to rely on abstract models. Besides benefiting scientific research, this development will improve science college courses.

“The challenge of this presentation will be to explain it like I’m talking to the regular public rather than a group of scientists,” Kilina said.

The presentation will take 40 to 50 minutes at the Science Cafe in Stocker’s Basement, Hotel Donaldson in Fargo.

It is free and open to those over 21. Otherwise, a parent or guardian is required.

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