Monday, October 01, 2007

Resource driven nanotechnology

This article reminded me of the quote Patrick mentioned in class last Thursday regarding driving faster so that we can use up fossil fuels in order to move on to another source of energy. Seems that Mazada is motivated to use nanotechnology to cut heavy metal usage and thus reduce their overhead. Interesting. I can't remember if we put parsimonious down on the p-list of all things nanotechnology.

Mazda develops catalyst to slash precious metal use

From Reuters UK:

TOKYO, Oct 1 (Reuters) - Japan's Mazda Motor Corp said on Monday it has developed the world's first catalyst for cars that employs single-nanotechnology to create a material structure that slashes platinum and palladium use by 70 to 90 percent.

The reduction results in no change in the performance of the automotive catalyst, which uses platinum, rhodium and palladium to trigger a chemical reaction with polluting nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons to clean tailpipe emissions.

Domestic rival Nissan Motor Co in July also said it had developed a catalyst for gasoline cars that uses nanotechnology to prevent clustering of the catalyst's fine metal particles under high temperature conditions. That would halve the use of precious metal components, it had said.

Single-nanotechnology can control smaller particles than nanotechnology.

Automakers have been burdened with higher-than-expected commodity prices, and are looking for ways to reduce material use to save costs.

A Mazda spokesman said the company had not decided yet when it would first employ the technology on a production model. It also has no plan for now to share the technology with controlling shareholder Ford Motor Co.


  1. looks like this is a "standard" nanoparticle application. Using a finer size of Pt or Pa to get a better catalyst...

  2. Patrick -- what does "standard" mean with regards to a nanoparticle application? Can you explain that?
    Seems that with everything we've been reading there is no "standard" yet? Do you mean standard a la sun screen or baby bottle?

    platinum - pt
    palladium - pd

    Here's another
    article explaining the catalyst

  3. "Standard" meaning fairly prosaic and not really any sort of application approaching the high-tech goodies promised by the NNI...production of nanosize and chemically simple particles is a pretty straight-forward deal...thanks for correcting my vague recollections of the periodic table.