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Switzerland launches nano research program

The Swiss National Science Foundation has launched the National Research Program, "Opportunities and risks of nanomaterials (NRP 64)," which seeks to "identify both the risks and the opportunities of nanomaterials for human health, the environment and natural resources." The program contains 18 projects divided into three modules -- medical applications; ecological effects of nanomaterials; and development and use of innovative nanomaterials in other domains, such as construction. The program intends to fill existing knowledge gaps regarding the effects of nanomaterials on humans and the environment by, among other things, developing methods and tools to monitor the behavior of nanomaterials. The program has a budget of 12 million Swiss francs ($13 million), and research is expected to continue until the end of 2015.

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