A Life-Cycle Approach to Relevant and Reliable Development of Nanotechnology for Sensors and Sensors for Nanotechnology

M.D. Hoover
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, US

Keywords: life-cycle, sensors, informatics


The Nanotechnology Signature Initiative white paper on Nanotechnology for Sensors and Sensors for Nanotechnology (http://www.nano.gov/node/849) states that effective development and widespread adoption of a new generation of high-performance sensors will require support at each step in a comprehensive nanosensor development lifecycle. The cycle begins with evaluation of a mission or performance requirement (real or emerging); proceeds through research and development, prototype testing, type testing, production control testing, training, and acceptance of a sensor and the associated instrumentation to accomplish the mission; continues with initial calibration, functional checks, and accumulation and review of operational experience to apply the sensor in a scientifically defensible manner in support of the mission; proceeds through maintenance and recalibration and through periodic performance testing to ensure that the sensor is still working; and eventually ends with either the ultimate completion of the mission or with replacement of the sensor by more relevant or more reliable methods. Agencies involved in the sensor signature initiative are involved in all stages of this cycle, from funding decisions at the earliest stages, through regulatory review and guidance, to the post-market surveillance of sensor deployment.