Actuarial model puts risks of making nanotubes on par with making wine
Using a method for assessing the premiums that companies pay for insurance, a team of scientists and insurance experts have concluded that the manufacturing processes for five, near-market nanomaterials -- including quantum dots, carbon nanotubes and buckyballs -- present fewer risks to the environment than some common industrial processes like oil refining. For two of the nanomaterials – nanotubes and alumoxane nanoparticles -- manufacturing risks were comparable with those of making wine or aspirin.
The study is available online and slated for publication in the Nov. 15 issue of Environmental Science and Technology. It compares the environmental and health risks associated with the production of five nanomaterials -- single-walled carbon nanotubes, buckyballs, zinc selenide quantum dots, alumoxane nanoparticles and titantium dioxide nanoparticles -- with the risks of making six commonplace products -- silicon wafers, wine, high-density plastic, lead-acid car batteries, refined petroleum and aspirin.
Jade Boyd | EurekAlert!
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