The NanoDefine consortium of 29 European RTD performers, metrology institutes, and nanomaterials and instrument manufacturers, are pictured gathered at a launch meeting in Wageningen, NL.

We have come a long way in exploring the full potential of nano as a key enabling technology, yet, there is no widely agreed method to answer a seemingly basic question: what is or isn’t a nanomaterial? One challenge consists in the development of methods that reliably identify, characterize and measure nanomaterials (NM) both as substance and in various products and matrices. In responses, the European Commission has recently recommended a definition of NM as a reference to determine this (2011/696/EU). The NanoDefine project will explicitly address this question over the next four years.

NanoDefine will closely collaborate with affiliated NanoSafety Cluster projects as well as engage with international EHS, RTD and metrology initiatives. NanoDefine will also be strongly linked to main standardization bodies, such as CEN, ISO and OECD, by actively participating in Technical Commissions and Working Groups, and by proposing specific ISO/CEN work items, to integrate the developed and validated methodology into the current standardization work.