Expert opinion: Comments of MISiS scientists on the professions of the future in the field of nanotechnology

    Outstanding specialists with indisputable experience in scientific fields shared their short comments with Geektimes readers regarding the prospects of various professions in the field of nanotechnology.

    Nanotechnology Designer

    A professional engaged in modeling properties, predicting the life cycle of nanotechnological materials using digital models. Highly professional programmer with good knowledge of nanophysics and nanochemistry.

    Fedotov Petr Sergeevich
    Doctor of Chemical Sciences
    More about scientific activity

    The emergence of such a profession is very likely. Moreover, with the rapid development of the nanotechnology industry that we are witnessing, such a profession will become necessary for the effective introduction of nanomaterials both in production and in everyday life.

    Security Specialist in Nanoindustry

    Responsible for the safety of workers in the field, end users of the product and the environment. Develops programs to quickly respond to the occurrence of negative consequences of the production / use of nanoproducts.

    Such a profession is likely to appear in the near future, moreover, it will become an urgent need. Nanoparticles appeared on yesterday, they always existed in the environment, in particular, as part of clay minerals. However, a great potential danger is the ingress of thousands of tons of artificially synthesized nanoparticles into the environment (for example, tons of titanium oxide nanoparticles, which are the main component of sunscreens, are already floating in the oceans).
    Nanoparticles that enter the human body (when breathing or through the skin) have increased penetrating ability. I must say that there is no conclusive evidence of the apparent harm of nanoparticles. At the same time, multidisciplinary research is underway regarding the safety of nanotechnology for humans and the environment, as reflected in the recently published book Nanotechnology Environmental Health and Safety (editors M.Hull and D.Bowman).
    Thus, there are all prerequisites for the emergence of a new profession of a security specialist in the nanoindustry.

    Composite Systems Systems Engineer

    Specialist in the replacement of traditional solutions when choosing materials for composite materials in construction, engineering and robotics, medicine, etc.

    Khovaylo Vladimir Vasilyevich
    Professor, Doctor of Physical and Mathematical Sciences
    More about scientific activity

    In my opinion, such a profession already actually exists. In the modern world, composite materials already play a very important role, despite the fact that they are still in the "infant" age. So there is no doubt that in the future both the range of composite materials and the scope of their applications will expand, which will in turn lead to an increase in the need for the number of specialists who are aware of the latest achievements and developments in the field of composite materials. Along with this, the systems engineer of composite materials should be well aware of the properties of traditional structural materials, especially their “weaknesses”, in order to determine the effectiveness (including economic) of replacing traditional material with composite.
    Given the growing role of composite materials used in construction and medicine in the aviation and automotive industries, it is highly likely that in the near future a curriculum will be developed for the preparation of bachelors and masters in the specialty “systems engineer of composite materials”

    Nanotechnology Designer

    A professional engaged in modeling properties, predicting the life cycle of nanotechnological materials using digital models. Highly professional programmer with good knowledge of nanophysics and nanochemistry.

    I am pessimistic about the likelihood of such a profession. The weakness of the numerical models used to calculate the physical and functional properties of materials (and nanomaterials are no exception) is that all models use some simplifications and almost all models have so-called fitting parameters (here I do not mean the so-called first-principle calculations, which, however, take up a lot of computer time and the results of which even for simple systems (for example, binary or triple intermetallic compounds) depend on the choice of initial theorems physical models). Neither now nor in the future do I see the prerequisites for the development of a model that would predict the properties and life cycle of new nanomaterials with an acceptable error. So this kind of activity will remain in the foreseeable future the prerogative of theoretical scientists. In any case, in order to be a professional in this field, it is not at all necessary to be a high-class programmer and possess good knowledge of “nanophysics” and “nanochemistry” - deep knowledge in theoretical physics and quantum chemistry will be quite enough.

    Read more about future professions on the atlas of new professions website.

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