In recent decades, German research on nanomaterials and new, innovative materials has been widely expanded by material safety aspects. European initiatives also pay significant attention to this: both the European Union (EU) Green Deal, and the Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability (CSS) aim to create a sustainable, climate-neutral economy with sustainable and safe chemicals and products, while better protecting human health and the environment. The focus is on fostering innovation while addressing global challenges.
The Safe-by-Design (SbD) strategy for nanomaterials and innovative materials is one approach to address precisely these challenges (see also Spotlight Research of November 2021). Risks to humans and the environment should ideally be identified, assessed, and reduced on an early stage of the development process. The European Horizon 2020 project NanoRegII also deals with safe-by-design and is the first project that has now conducted a practical test of the safe-by-design concept. The NanoRegII safe-by-design strategy was implemented at six companies. The experience gained was then evaluated and guidelines for practical implementation of the safe-by-design strategy for the future were developed. In addition to being informative, the guidelines also contain several tools that are intended to help identify risks at an early stage. This should enable an assessment at each step in the innovation process as to whether the innovation should be continued and, if so, which safe-by-design measures need to be further applied to reduce uncertainties. The guidelines thus offer a first approach that can be adapted by each company to its specific requirements for innovation.
Sánchez Jiménez, A. et al 2022 Safe(r) by design guidelines for the nanotechnology industry. NanoImpact 25, 100385.
Spotlight March 2021: Is Nanotechnology the Swiss Army Knife against Future Pandemics?
The COVID 19 outbreak has led to a fundamental rethinking of existing approaches to diagnosis, treatment, and prevention methods. The need for better and more efficient concepts is global and urgent. Nanotechnology has long been at the forefront of innovation and has led to advances in many different disciplines. Could this interdisciplinary field help develop […]Read more
Spotlight August 2020: The nanoGRAVUR Grouping approach
In August, we would like to present a paper of the German BMBF project nanoGRAVUR. nanoGRAVUR dealt from 2015-2018 with the grouping of nanostructured materials with regard to occupational safety, consumer and environmental protection and risk mitigation. The approach is now described by the project partners in this paper.Due to the variety of synthetic nanomaterials and the numerous modifications (differences in size, shape, chemical composition and surface functionalization), the effort required to investigate effects and behaviour within the framework of regulatory requirements is…Read more
Spotlight April 2023: Recycling rare earths – bacteria assist in the circular economy
Rare earths are important components of wind turbines, catalytic converters, fibre optic cables and plasma screens. Since the 17 metals grouped under this term are indispensable for modern technologies, demand and costs are constantly rising. The occurrence of productive mining sites is limited and the production is often costly and environmentally harmful. The advantages of […]Read more
Spotlight December 2020: Rethinking Nanosafety – Part II
In December we would like to draw attention to the special issue: Rethinking Nanosafety – Part II in small. In the July Spotlight we already presented Part I. This special issue “Rethinking Nanosafety – Part II” also features research papers by renowned scientists in the field of nanosafety research. The first part of this special […]Read more