Nanomaterials Research Lab

What is Nano?

The nanoscale is really small. 1 nanometer is 1 x 10-9 meter.

Let’s put things into perspective:

  • There are 25,400,000 nanometers in one inch
  • A sheet of paper is about 100,000 nanometers in thickness
  • A strand of DNA is about 2.5 nanometers wide

Nanomaterials are materials with at least one external dimension that is less than 100 nanometers.

Nanomaterials can be:

  • Natural (made by nature)
  • Incidental (formed unintentionally by human influence)
  • Engineered (intentionally produced by humans)
An image of a carbon nanotube produced by Dr. Carole Baddour.

Why Study Something So Small?

Everything changes at the nanoscale. For example...

  • The melting point of bulk gold is 1064 °C (1948 °F), however, the melting point of a gold particle 1 nanometer in diameter is 20 °C (68 °F)
  • Copper at the nanoscale, is actually transparent

How can this be? Gold is gold and copper is copper, but properties of materials are influenced not only by chemical composition, but also size, shape and surface characteristics. The unique properties of materials at the nanoscale provide us with opportunities to create improved devices and structures.

Nanomaterial Research at Wilkes University

Carole Baddour, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, works on nanotechnology-related research. She develops materials at the nanoscale and studies their use for novel applications.

Current Research

  • Synthesis of carbon nanotubes on metal substrates
  • Investigation of nanomaterials applications in heat transfer, water filtration and water harvesting

Want to Know More?


Dr. Carole Emilie Baddour
Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Associate Dean, College of Business and Engineering