The NanoTechnology Group Inc

Each year we re-define our project goals based on the amount of resources available and requests to partner with other organizations and universities that match our vision and mission. 


Our 2013 mission has a focus on introducing nano science curriculum into classrooms.  In order to encourage students and teachers to understand the importance of this scale of science, they need to see that "SIZE MATTERS" in the unseen world of nature. 

This chart created by the Department of Energy gives us a starting point.

Teachers can download the chart and print it out.

Students can submit artwork for the online NanoArt exhibit developed from the scans provided below and submit them independantly with Form for submitting artwork.



View the Discovery News slide show of the winners of the NanoART 2011.

 NanoArt is a glimpse into an unbelievably tiny world that only a small number of scientists have viewed. For the average person, the realm of nanotechnology -- that is, structures smaller than a billionth of a meter -- is as remote and inaccessible as the moon.

But nanoartist Cris Orfrescu wanted to change that. He created the NanoArt Exhibition to share the beauty of the nano-world with those of us living in the macro-world.

Using electron microscopes, scientists capture images of nano-sized landscapes and then colorize them with digital photography software in order to create pieces of art.

The following images are winners from the 2011 competition. Although you may be interested in learning what the image is, Orfrescu wants the public to s

NanoART for KIDS has been launched

The first two paintings have been posted.  The students were from Kindergarten and Grade 5 at the time of submission.

Click on the painting to open for larger view and click again and more information from the student.

We encourage teachers to view the albums to gain an understanding of the beauty of science at the nanoscale and then read the following article. 

NanoArt for Kids program opens the window

to this tiny scale of science for K-12 students

Children learn by exploring their world and will now be able to see a tiny version of our world that looks quite different with powerful microscopes to challenge their imaginations


The NanoArt K12 program has been launched by Cris Orfescu, artist and scientist from in collaboration with Judith Light Feather, artist and founder of The Nanotechnology Group Inc., which provides support to  group members for the facilitation and development of  innovative Nanoscale Science education globally.  

The purpose of this worldwide program is to stimulate creativity and expand the visionary imaginations of our children through innovative education activities to promote a new paradigm unifying the art-science-technology intersections at the nanoscale.  Size matters in all scales of science and textbook publishers have not included the nanoscale of science in their subject matter for K-12 students.  Universities are now offering teachers workshops in various areas of the country to explain nano science to high school students in hopes that they will introduce new material into their classrooms.   

NanoArt is a new discipline which combines art with science creating paintings and sculptures at molecular and atomic levels. Scientists use chemical or physical processes to explore the surfaces, composition and interaction of elements at the nanoscale, which can now be viewed and manipulated with powerful research tools like scanning electron (SEM) scanning tunneling (STM) and atomic force microscopes (AFM). These scientific images are then captured and further processed, using different digital techniques.  Since these tools are too expensive for primary grade classrooms we will be providing weblinks to sites that the children, parents and teachers can explore. 

Nano means ‘dwarf’ and a nanometer is 1 billionth of a meter which is too small to see with the human eye.  This unique introduction to the K-12 students showcasing the beauty of nature at this tiny scale of science is designed to stimulate their imagination and curiosity strengthening the desire to learn more science, technology and engineering (STEM) courses as they move through the primary grades and enter high school. 

Art is the perfect media for this first introduction as the visual scans naturally challenge the child to recognize patterns that match the shapes they are familiar with in their everyday reality.  You will soon discover when viewing the scans provided that many familiar shapes will appear within the scans that can be further developed through drawings, paintings and sculptures, which can be submitted for the NanoArt K12 online exhibition.  All compositions will be grouped online by age/grade level for the viewers. 


                   Nano colibri scan        Natures adornment oil pastel painting


                 Nanoflower scan for art      ‘Nano Wisdom' oil pastel painting

In preparing for this launch Light Feather developed an oil pastel painting from the nanoflower scan (shown above) that would serve as an example of an image that was reflected in the patterns. “ I could have created a flower, a bear, or a monkey as the example, but my imagination saw the owl as the predominant shape that resonated with my mind.  I have titled it "Nano Wisdom" as the energy of the owl has always been noted in Native American cultures to honor wisdom and 'wisdom keepers.'  The scan above it titled: nano colibri was rotated 90 degrees and the image is very prominent, which resulted in the painting next to it titled: Natures adornment.     

It is our intention that the NanoArt for Kids will open the door for teachers to explore the outsource materials being created and include some of the visual elements and experiential online labs in their classrooms in the future. 

You can download the PDF file of the recommended modules for exploration and the Form for submitting your child's artwork.

New scans have been released and can be used for this project.

 Send your questions to or 

Source: The NanoTechnology Group NanoNews Division 

Notes for teachers:

A teacher in New Hampshire wrote and asked for ideas for her 4th grade art class regarding the NanoArt project.  The textbooks include a section for light and shadow in art and she wanted to know how to apply it for the nano art exhibit.  I sent her the following response and hope it may help other art teachers as well.  Please note that we have not set any deadlines for submission so that you can include this project in the Spring 2010. 

The Powers of Ten Microscope is the first place I would take students so they could understand the 'size matters' issue. 

They can pause the Powers of Ten microscope and go back and forth between the sizes when you get down to the nanoscale and smaller.  Watch for the leaf on the tree and then you can pause it at 100 nanometers which shows the DNA and next is the neucleosome of the DNA which is 1 nanometer.

Experience Microscopy:

Visitors can adjust the focus, contrast, and magnification of microscopic creatures viewed at thousands of times their actual size.

Go to Powers of Ten Interactive Java Tutorials for Teachers and Students from Florida State University

 Teachers Interactive Lesson Plans

The teachers interactive lessons are at this link and they do cover light and shadow at this small scale.

Photo Galleries to Explore

This section show a list of all the photo galleries that you can access. They have so many topics you can explore for the children, even Ice Cream and Hamburgers and french fries.

This section is the Interactive Microscopes

Interactive Java Tutorials

Welcome to the Molecular Expressions Virtual Microscopy website. We invite you to visit the interactive Java-powered virtual microscopes that we have constructed. These virtual microscopes explore specimen focus, illumination intensity, magnification, and translation---operating essentially in a manner that is identical to real-life microscopes.

This section is for light and Color:

Light and Color

Light is a complex phenomenon that is classically explained with a simple model based on rays and wavefronts. The Molecular Expressions Microscopy Primer explores many of the aspects of visible light starting with an introduction to electromagnetic radiation and continuing through to human vision and the perception of color. Each section outlined below is an independent treatise on a limited aspect of light and color. We hope you enjoy your visit and find the answers to your questions.

This last one on the above page may be of interest to your students.

Light and Color Java Tutorials - Difficult concepts in the physics of light and the science of optics are much easier to understand with the aid of interactive tutorials that demonstrate various aspects of the principles involved. Check out these cool Java tutorial-applets that explore a wide range of concepts in light, color, and optics.

Each section of this site is set up for teachers and it is all virtual, you don't need to download anything except JAVA if your computers do not have it.  The site will automatically download the JAVA tools.

If you are an art or science teacher and would like more ideas on how to introduce nanoscale science through art, please download the PDF file of the recommended modules for exploration or contact

"The Science of Leonaro: Inside the Mind of the Great Genius of the Renaissance" by Fritjof Capra is a wonderful resource book for teachers who would like to further understand why science and art are a natural experiential form of learning about nature. 

Volunteer to participate at or WIKI

Outreach program volunteer participation to include nano science curriculum for K-12  at

and the One Laptop per Child content site at 

We have had many requests from teachers to create a syllabus by grade level of the new instructional materials developed through the nationwide outreach programs listed on our K-12 Outreach page.  Even though these classroom lessons are already assessed and approved, our teachers do not have time in their teaching syllabus to create a new course, nor look for nano science curriculum that would be grade appropriate as in-depth add-on learning modules at each grade level based the topics included in the various science textbooks.  Since all of the outreach programs are developed as free resources under the license, they can be organized to fit into the required skill levels of current science topics. 

It would be very helpful to the teachers in our public schools if this service could be included by the project developers, based on the national and state skill levels while they are developing the instructional materials as an extra step to help us reach more classrooms.  If this approach interests your outreach team, our organization will provide our IRS designation letter to recognize your donated time as a volunteer.  Visit the site and review the tools available as resources for teachers and let us  know if you can upload your project curriculum for nano science.  Each lesson that is posted will help our students and teachers take the step of inclusion in the classrooms, increasing the value of your project funding as expansion of outreach.


New Curriculum Development Resources for Teachers

Education Tools

Curriki is designed to accommodate our community of educators, parents and students to work together to develop interesting, creative and effective educational materials that the global educational community can use for free.

The goal is to:

Develop curriculum through community contributors

Deliver the curriculum globally

Determine the impact by project and by individual

The initial focus is on K-12 curricula in the areas of mathematics, science, technology, reading and language arts, and languages.

Some of the Outreach programs for nanoscale science need to be adopted and developed for the teachers to discern the appropriate grade level for introduction into classrooms as indepth materials to expand topics now listed in current textbooks.  Curriki provides open source curriculum tools to accomplish these goals.

The OLPC project is ready for content

Teachers, Programmers and Developers can also help us provide nano science education as content in the laptops.  Visit the Outreach Programs listed for K-12 that are published under the creativecommons attribution 2.5 license and qualify for inclusion under the OLPC guidelines.

Educators page: 

Teachers, programmers and developers interested in volunteer opportunities:

(a) Online, open-source, wiki-textbooks, math and science projects, dictionaries, geographies, histories, social studies, health and nutrition courses, and translations into indigenous languages. These materials can be customized for a particular region or group of children or for more general use throughout the OLPC world; Go to OLPC Content wikipage: 

(b) Software applications not otherwise available on laptops for children that will enhance the general usefulness of laptops in every location. This could be, for example, educational games; collaborative and archiving tools; or artistic, video and graphic tools; Go to OLPC Developers Programwikipage.

(c) Other ways to participate can be found on this OLPC wikipage. 

All materials and peripherals developed with OLPC Foundation support must follow open source formats and standards and be available without fee for use by any child with an OLPC-provided laptop.

Support Global Education with The NanoTechnology Group Inc. project

Donate under our 501 (c) 3 designation EIN#73-3039012

All donations are tax deductable as an approved IRS designated foundation

Donated time for content development will be acknowledged by IRS with an in-kind letter from our organization at the end of the year if you report your hours and provide your contact information and a list of the instructional materials that were uploaded for the program by email to: 

Extend the reach of your NSF funded projects to develop K-12 nano science curriculum by volunteering to upload the finished lessons at both of these sites for U.S. classrooms and students in developing nations. 


Rice-African partnership is open-education blockbuster


Houston-based Rice University and Cape Town, South Africa-based Shuttleworth Foundation today announced plans to jointly develop one of the world's largest, most comprehensive sets of free online teaching materials for primary and secondary school children. Using their open-education projects -- Rice's Connexions and the Shuttleworth's Siyavula -- the organizations will work to transform South African primary and secondary education with a bold initiative based on open-access educational content, open-source software, and online educator communities.

Read entire article at Resources-Global Outreach

Editor's Note:  Please read this and you will understand why teachers and students cannot wait for the 'top down' approval from Washington to start teaching nanoscience in K-12.  The future is NOW.

Nanotechnology Education in the US


Written by Mark Tuominen, Director National Nanomanufacturing Network

February 24, 2011

There is a concerted effort underway to bolster education and training in nanotechnology in the US as an essential component of National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI). To achieve substantial and lasting impact this activity necessarily reaches across all audience levels: K12, two-year college, four-year college, graduate degree level, professional, and public. Education and training is critically important to the National Nanomanufacturing Network (NNN) since a trained workforce is the key ingredient of a nation that leads through innovation and manufacturing.

The direct link between education and a thriving national enterprise cannot be over emphasized. The recently passed reauthorization of the America Competes Act (H.R. 5116) underscores the importance of education programs in manufacturing, innovation, and entrepreneurship, as a complement to the vital science technology education and mathematics (STEM) educational activities. To be thoroughly effective, impacting both jobs and the economy, these programs need to be guided with a close partnership between educational institutions, industry, and government. Alongside the Subcommittee on Nanoscale Science, Engineering and Technology (NSET) that has guided the NNI for the last ten years, the new Interagency Working Group on Manufacturing Research and Development coordinated by National Science and Technology Council of the Office of Science and Technology Policy in the White House can play an important leadership role.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) currently funds numerous educational efforts in nanotechnology. One notable nano-education initiative that has emerged recently focuses on two-year, community-college education. These programs are relevant to recently students directly out of high school, as well as to individuals already in careers seeking professional development. Industry has an ongoing need for personnel trained at this two-year level to work in manufacturing, as well as corporate research and development. The Nanotechnology Applications and Career Knowledge (NACK) Center, run by Penn State College of Engineering, provides hands-on laboratory education for incumbent workers for the micro- and nanotechnology industry and offers professional development programs for secondary and postsecondary educators. The NACK center provides national coordination of micro- and nanofabrication workforce development programs and activities through its website. Many other two-year programs focused on nanotechnology exist in the US, including the Nano-Link network of technical community colleges in the midwest. Dakota County Technical College, which coordinates the Nano-Link network, was the first college in the US to offer a two-year multi-disciplinary AAS Degree in NanoScience Technology.

For a longer period of time, universities and colleges across the nation have implemented an array of nanotechnology education programs and curricula for students at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Much of this has been seeded through funding from the NSF, either as education activities associated with nanotechnology research centers and networks, or as stand-alone educational programs. Each of the 18 NSF Nanoscale Science and Engineering Centers (NSECs) provide nano-specific courses and research training for both undergrad and grad students. During the last decade, these centers have built up a strong portfolio of nanoscale science and engineering curricula. A considerable amount of undergraduate training takes place through summer Research Education for Undergraduate (REU) activities and other activities throughout the year. Graduate research education is an integral part of an NSF center’s mission. The unique laboratory facilities for making and characterizing nanoscale materials and devices at the NSECs are a foundation upon which professional careers are launched. Frequent interactions with industrial scientists, engineers and executives provide students a pathway for collaboration and jobs. Similarly the university-industry interactions through workshops and training sessions provide a means for industry scientists to learn of recent developments in university research and emerging techniques in nanotechnology. Similarly, the NSF’s Materials Research Science and Engineering Centers (MRSECs) are substantial centers providing education and training. Many of these MRSECs have important components in nanotechnology research, as nanomaterials are integrated through much of materials science today. A number of Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) programs exist that a focus specifically on nanotechnology education. These programs provide graduate training that transcends traditional disciplinary boundaries and requires teamwork so that students can become leaders in science and engineering.

Several nanotechnology networks have emerged over the last decade, each of which provide education, training, professional development and industry-university partnership opportunities. The Network for Computational Nanotechnology created NanoHUB, which besides being a leading NSF cyberinfrastructure project focused on simulation, also provides a wealth of nanoscience educational resources including lectures, courses, and simulation tools. The NanoEd portal, hosted at Northwestern University, similarly provides curricula for formal nanoscience education. The National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network (NNIN), which operates major research user facilities at 14 universities across the nation, also provides important training and education opportunities. The NNIN Education Portal is a place to find information about facilities training for graduate students, undergradate students, professionals and others. The NNIN organizes seminars and international workshops that provide training in new nanotech research and nanofabrication techniques. The National Nanomanufacturing Network (NNN) provides many workshops geared specifically toward the advancement of nanomanufacturing and cooperation between universities, companies, and government labs. Centers affiliated with the NNN provide seminars, courses and training sessions with a focus on commercially-scalable nanomanufacturing processes and related techniques. The NNN’s informatics project, InterNano, serves as an information resource on nanomanufacturing to students and professionals alike.

The NSECs and other centers also provide educational outreach to K12 students and teachers. For example, the Center for Hierarchical Manufacturing at the University of Massachusetts Amherst provides an annual Summer Institute that provides hands-on nanoscience curricula for K12 science teachers, and the Center for Templated Synthesis and Assembly at the Nanoscale at the University of Wisconsin Madison provides numerous teacher training opportunities. A major project in informal nanoscience education is NISEnet a network representing partnerships between science museums and universities across the U.S. NISEnet provides many avenues and opportunities for nanoscience education to students and the general public. One major event is NanoDays -- an annual nationwide festival of educational programs about nanoscale science and engineering. This spring event, which occurs at over 200 locations across the country from Puerto Rico to Hawaii, introduces the public to the basic tenets of nanotechnology and its potential impact on the future.

Since many equipment items for fabrication and characterization of nanoscale materials and devices are quite expensive, some companies have started to develop lower-cost equipment that would be suitable for academic teaching laboratories. NanoProfessor is a product line from the Northwestern University spin-off company NanoInk that provides atomic force microscopy (AFM), dip-pen lithography, and other capabilities at a cost that is substantially lower than that of full scale research instrumentation. The availability of USB optical microscopes and other emerging equipment opens of new avenues of nanoeducation curricula for K12, two-year colleges, science museums, colleges and universities.

Although there are many more educational activities, funded through various federal and state programs, that could be discussed, one can see that there is an important critical mass of nanoscale science and engineering education programs taking place in the U.S. It is important that a new wave of education and training in best practices to translate this knowledge into products complement it, specifically education in 21st century innovation, entrepreneurship and manufacturing.

InterNano - a project of the National Nanomanufacturing Network

InterNano is a dynamic information clearinghouse for the nanomanufacturingcommmunity.