production of nano-sized structures requires precise control of many environmental
factors. Precise control of parameters such as temperature stability, vibration
(both acoustic and physical), airborne contaminants, electrical magnetic
interference (EMI), and molecular contamination are required for the effective
realization of nano-scale technologies.
The exacting environmental control required of nanotechnology necessitates
a comprehensive approach to controlling each individual environmental
aspect. Whether it be an application for lifesciences, such as nano-scale
genomics research, biomedical implants, alternative drug delivery mechanisms,
or others like structural composites, industrial coatings or integrated
circuits, the tools and instruments used to explore nano-scale applications
demand a new set of environmental control solutions.
Mini-environments are a crucial part of a comprehensive environment
control plan. Mini-environments provide precise and efficient temperature
and humidity control, sound attenuation, and can be designed to reduce
EMI. In addition, mini-environments provide these high levels of environmental
control in an integrated, economical package and can be implemented faster
than facility construction or modification. These attributes make mini-environments
a good solution to unexpected environmental issues as well as part of
a planned nano-scale facility.
Our experience at UCLA's
physics lab is a great example of how mini-environments
can provide the environmental control required to conduct nanotechnology