Prof. Stig Stenström - Chemical Engineering Department, The Lund Institute of Technology, Lund, Sweden
Pick up a human hair, and then realize that a nanowire can be a thousand times thinner. Made of materials such as semiconductors, polymers, and carbon, these incredibly thin threads can have diameters <10 nm, just tens of atoms across.
Early laboratory findings indicate that these ultra-fine wires will open up a variety of remarkable applications. But until we learn how to manufacture them efficiently, these comm-ercial uses will remain only dreams.
Researchers thought they had a good grasp on how nanowires grow, but recent mathematical models along with laboratory observations have uncovered evidence that a completely different growth mechanism might be at work.
Sophisticated modeling is helping researchers better understand this revolutionary process and prepare it for commercialization.