Risk assessment procedures (contact Anders Baun and Steffen Foss Hansen)
The growing use of nanotechnologies will lead to an increasing release of manufactured nanomaterials into the environment. Due to their size, nano-materials have physical-chemical properties that are different from those of their parent materials. Because of this, they behave differently from their parent materials when released into the environment and interact differently with living systems. We develop and apply risk assessment procedures for nanomaterials and provide guidance as to which precautionary measures are warranted in order to encourage the development of nanotechnology, while at the same time minimizing the potential for adverse effects on the environment.
Uncertainty analysis framework (contact Anders Baun and Khara Grieger)
Scientific uncertainty about the environmental, health and safety issues (EHS) of nanomaterials has been recognized by various stakeholders as a possible barrier towards nanotechnology reaching its full potential. While it is important to investigate identified gaps within EHS knowledge and research for the sake of science itself, it is also crucial that these research efforts are strategically focused and prioritized in order to assist regulators, industry, as well as scientists in the EHS challenges that face them in developing nanomaterials. Therefore, we are investigating the main areas of uncertainty related to EHS of nanomaterials, further describing the knowledge gaps according to its level of knowledge (on scale from complete deterministic knowledge to ignorance) as well as if research efforts are likely to reduce the uncertainties in the short-term.