Research Topic

Challenges in Nanomaterials Characterization

About this Research Topic

In recent years, nanotechnology has been a hot topic within the scientific community due to the specific properties in the nanoscale and has become an enabling technology for numerous applications. Research publications have seen its growing peak between 2004 and 2014. Since then, publication rate remained stable to low, maintaining a research share of about 8% in the last 2 years. Produced science on new nanomaterials and its characteristics and applications has been identified as a key enabling technology and keeps stimulating industrial growth, innovation and development, in the most diverse fields such as medicine, food, cosmetics, electronics, automotive, energy, construction, and other areas.

At the same time, uncertainties about its safety for human health and the environment are still hampering a more widespread exploration of its potentials and several authorities and official organisms are therefore defining actions for the implementation of a safe, integrated and responsible approach for nanoscience and nanotechnologies. As an important step in that direction, definitions of nanomaterials are being proposed and implemented for regulatory and policy purposes in order to ensure harmonized terminology and definitions across different pieces of legislation.

On the other hand, it has also been realized that the reliable detection, characterization and quantification of nanomaterials is still one of the greatest challenges particularly in complex matrices, such as products, food and the environment.

This topic “Challenges in Nanomaterials Characterization” is mainly intended to gather work related to:

- Procedures, techniques and protocols for the characterization of nanoobjects or nanostructured materials in different matrices.
- Physical and chemical properties such as, sphere equivalent size (volume, diameter), size distribution by volume and/or number, average size (percentiles), shape, physical state (crystalline phase, amorphous, etc), surface charge, zeta potential, molecular weight, surface area, optical properties, chemical properties (wettability, hydrophobicity....) and surface reactivity, among others.
- Separation, extraction and isolation techniques and methods needed for nanomaterials sample preparation prior to characterizations.
- Method performance comparisons for the same property/material, as well as method validation in different circumstances and harmonization attempts in this field.


Keywords: Nanomaterials, Characterization, Harmonization, Complex Matrices, Separation


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

In recent years, nanotechnology has been a hot topic within the scientific community due to the specific properties in the nanoscale and has become an enabling technology for numerous applications. Research publications have seen its growing peak between 2004 and 2014. Since then, publication rate remained stable to low, maintaining a research share of about 8% in the last 2 years. Produced science on new nanomaterials and its characteristics and applications has been identified as a key enabling technology and keeps stimulating industrial growth, innovation and development, in the most diverse fields such as medicine, food, cosmetics, electronics, automotive, energy, construction, and other areas.

At the same time, uncertainties about its safety for human health and the environment are still hampering a more widespread exploration of its potentials and several authorities and official organisms are therefore defining actions for the implementation of a safe, integrated and responsible approach for nanoscience and nanotechnologies. As an important step in that direction, definitions of nanomaterials are being proposed and implemented for regulatory and policy purposes in order to ensure harmonized terminology and definitions across different pieces of legislation.

On the other hand, it has also been realized that the reliable detection, characterization and quantification of nanomaterials is still one of the greatest challenges particularly in complex matrices, such as products, food and the environment.

This topic “Challenges in Nanomaterials Characterization” is mainly intended to gather work related to:

- Procedures, techniques and protocols for the characterization of nanoobjects or nanostructured materials in different matrices.
- Physical and chemical properties such as, sphere equivalent size (volume, diameter), size distribution by volume and/or number, average size (percentiles), shape, physical state (crystalline phase, amorphous, etc), surface charge, zeta potential, molecular weight, surface area, optical properties, chemical properties (wettability, hydrophobicity....) and surface reactivity, among others.
- Separation, extraction and isolation techniques and methods needed for nanomaterials sample preparation prior to characterizations.
- Method performance comparisons for the same property/material, as well as method validation in different circumstances and harmonization attempts in this field.


Keywords: Nanomaterials, Characterization, Harmonization, Complex Matrices, Separation


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

28 February 2018 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

28 February 2018 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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