:: Introduction


The 1st International Symposium on Nanotechnology in Construction (2003) demonstrated that Nanotechnology has the answer to many of the needs of the construction sector, concerning materials, in relation to sustainability and competitiveness, and that its application within this sector is expected to translate into a massive technological and economic impact in the medium to long term.

The future of construction materials rests on the development of their multifunctional character. The concept of knowledge-based materials is absolutely relevant to this goal, and Nanotechnology is the major enabling tool allowing to manipulate, design and engineer materials at scales from 0.1 nm -100 nm. In particular, Nanotechnology is expected to lead to the development of materials with increased durability and improved performance, as well as to the development of ultra high-performance materials.

Nanotechnology has a disruptive character. It could lead to the development of entirely new productive processes with greater energy efficiency, better output, a reduced use of natural raw materials and less waste generation, thus helping towards sustainable development. The global market for products arising from Nanotechnology is predicted to reach $1 trillion by 2015, of which materials would represent a high proportion.

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