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Nanotechnology Issues in Manufacturing

Sophomore Course: ENGR 213 Principles of Materials Engineering

ENGR 213 Principles of Materials Engineering is a sophomore-level course required for the following majors: aerospace engineering, chemical engineering, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, and petroleum engineering. The goal of the NUE project was to generate two modules for the course, each corresponding to one hour of lecture material. Given the breadth of nanotechnology material and the very limited time, the project team faced a difficult challenge of deciding which topics to include. One of the guiding principles was to focus on topics that were likely to continue to be relevant and applicable for several years in this rapidly changing area. After much discussion, the team decided to focus on why behavior of materials may be so different at the nanoscale and approaches to manufacturing at the nanoscale. In the first module two basic ideas underlie differences at the nanoscale: scaling and granularity. The second module features two different approaches to nanoscale manufacturing: top-down (use existing techniques to fabricate smaller and smaller features) and bottom-up (start with atoms or molecules and assemble larger units). Both topics mesh well with the overall conception of an introductory course on materials and both provide students with a foundation for future study of nanotechnology.


This project was supported by the Division of Engineering Education and Centers of the National Science Foundation under grant number EEC-0304049. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.


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